Since Herman Cain shot to the front spot in the Republican presidential polling many political observers have been waiting for this politically inexperienced candidate to mess up. We’ve seen an expose on his previous career as a paid spokesman for conservative issues backed by the Koch family, and there has been intense scrutiny of his 9-9-9 “flat” tax plans and policy ignorance and inexperience.  This weekend his campaign hit another major stumbling block having to do with his personal conduct.

In an exclusive report, Politico is reporting that Cain was accused of inappropriate behavior by two women who worked for him at the National Restaurant Association. From Politico:

During Herman Cain’s tenure as the head of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s, at least two female employees complained to colleagues and senior association officials about inappropriate behavior by Cain, ultimately leaving their jobs at the trade group, multiple sources confirm to POLITICO.

[...]

In one case, POLITICO has seen documentation describing the allegations and showing that the restaurant association formally resolved the matter. Both women received separation packages that were in the five-figure range.

In recent weeks Cain had become the front runner in all major national polling. It remains to be seen whether there are any further developments related to these allegations and if they have an impact on Cain’s poll numbers.

One of the reasons previously un-elected politicians have a tough time running for President is that their past hasn’t been vetted in previous campaigns. This means there can be a higher probability of damaging new stories breaking during the presidential campaign than we would expect for an established politician.

For a presidential candidate it is much better to have any potential issue from their past to have come out in earlier, lesser campaigns, so they are relatively old news by the time of the presidential run.

Update – Cain has admitted that he was accused of harassment but claims the accusation were baseless.