Rick Perry, during a Thursday interview on CNN, denied any involvement in leaks surrounding the sexual harassment allegations leveled at fellow GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain.
When pressed by John King on whether his campaign played any role in pushing the Cain story, Perry stated, "our campaign didn't have anything to do with it." Perry vigorously denied his campaign's involvement in the controversy during the interview. He also told King that he would fire anybody on his staff if it was discovered that they had any involvement, saying that any such person would be "out the door." The Texas Governor elaborated, "I just think you say, listen, if - if you're passing on rumors that are that heinous, that bad, you don't need to be working with me. Gone."
On Wednesday, Cain's Chief of Staff Mark Block appeared on Fox News and accused the Perry campaign of leaking the sexual harassment allegations to Politico. "The actions of the Perry campaign are despicable," said Block. He added, "Rick Perry and his campaign owe Herman Cain and his family an apology."
During the CNN interview, King asked Perry if he believes that an apology is owed to Cain:
Perry: "No apology needed. We found out about this the same time that I suppose the rest of America found out about it, both on the - the Internet or the next day in the news. So, you know, I don't know how to tell any other way except knew nothing about it, sir."
During a Thursday morning CNN interview, Perry adviser Curt Anderson, who worked on Cain's unsuccessful 2004 U.S. Senate bid, denied any involvement in leaking the Cain story. He explained, "I didn't know anything about this, I didn't leak it." The Cain campaign had accused Anderson of leaking the sexual harassment allegations, but on Thursday, Block walked back his charges against Anderson. "Until we get all the facts, I'm just gonna say that we accept what Mr. Anderson has said and we want to move on with the campaign," explained Block on Fox News. Nevertheless, Block said that "I will stand behind what we said yesterday." He added that he was "thrilled that Mr. Anderson said that it didn't come from him."
The Cain campaign is not finished pointing fingers. According to The Washington Post, Cain's operation is considering legal action against Politico, which ran the initial report about sexual harassment allegations made against Cain.Video from Wednesday of Block demanding an apology from Perry can be viewed below: