Herman Cain endorsed Newt Gingrich for president here on Saturday, injecting some energy into the campaign with two days to go until Florida’s primary.
Newt Gingrich the right person to address the “crisis of leadership in the White House,” Herman Cain said as he endorses the candidate.
“I hereby officially and enthusiastically endorse Newt Gingrich for president of the United States,” Cain told the cheering crowd here. “Speaker Gingrich is a patriot. Speaker Gingrich is not afraid of bold ideas,” the former presidential candidate and pizza executive said.
“And I also know that Speaker Gingrich is running for president and going through this sausage grinder — I know what this sausage grinder is all about. I know he is going through this sausage grinder because he cares about the future of the United States of America.”
Gingrich thanked Cain and said he’d be a co-chairman of a commission on “jobs, economic growth and taxes” should Gingrich become president. He promised that “this little thing” known as Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan would be part of the national conversation.
“This is a real job creator who’s actually managed a company,” Gingrich said of Cain. “He’s going to be a great asset.”
Cain’s endorsement may not provide a major bounce for the former speaker. But it could infuse some energy into a campaign that’s now trailing Mitt Romney in Florida polls after a lackluster debate performance and scathing attack ads against Gingrich by Romney and his super PAC.
Since abandoning his own bid for the Republican nomination — dogged by allegations of misconduct with women dating to his tenure at the helm of the National Restaurant Association — Cain is still trying to influence the race.
On the day in December that he dropped out of the race, he announced the launch of a website to show “the people are still in charge of this country” that would promote his tax plan and other issues he trumpeted during his presidential bid.
Cain had suggested that he would not endorse a presidential candidate, instead offering up an “unconventional endorsement” of “the people” who will decide the race.
At a keynote speech of the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, Cain said his endorsement was “not a candidate seeking the nomination, not someone that’s running.”