Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain pauses while speaking at the Congressional Health Caucus Thought Leaders Series, Wednesday, Nov. 2, on Capitol Hill.
This is the day the Herman Cain campaign went on the attack.
Faced with Monday's sordid allegations from former Chicago radio sales executive Sharon Bialek, Cain's campaign came out early Tuesday with a pointed email to reporters titled, "Who is Sharon Bialek?"
The woman, who now resides in suburban Mundelein, charged that Cain attempted to grope her as she sought his assistance in getting a job in 1997.
The Cain campaign release noted numerous court cases and a sordid child custody fight from eleven years ago, including a Bialek bankruptcy filing listing thousands of dollars in debts and creditors, including $4,500 in back rent on a Lake Shore Drive condo, more than $17,000 in back legal fees, and more than $13,000 in credit card debt.
"In stark contrast to Mr. Cain's four decades spent climbing the corporate ladder rising to the level of CEO at multiple successful business enterprises, Ms. Bialek has taken a far different path," the campaign said.
Asked on NBC’s Today show if she had a financial motivation for coming forward with her charges against Cain, Bialek answered with a terse,"Absolutely not."
Indeed, she seemed reconciled to the fact that haunting details of her past would soon be served up courtesy of the Cain campaign and a curious press corps. And if there was any doubt to the latter, a visit to the Cook County Court Clerk’s office Tuesday afternoon revealed an army of reporters poring through Bialek case files.
Among those, a 2000 paternity and child custody case, in which her son's father, West Naze, accused Bialek of being an unfit mother, even as she fought him for child support.
"I'll get back to you in a few days..." he quoted her saying. "Perhaps you'll find us sleeping on the street..."
The petition cited "attempts to strike and shove west (the boy's father) into the wall..." as the child clung to his leg.
"This incident alone demonstrates Sharon's unsuitability and instability as the sole residential parent..." attorneys wrote.
"Sharon's significant mental and emotional problems impede her from properly caring for (the child), and could possibly lead to his endangerment.”
"I expected this," Bialek said in her NBC interview. "This is what happens. It’s not about me. I’m not the one running for President."