Stephen Reader covers politics for It's a Free Country, WNYC's interactive politics site. He joined the station in 2010 and has also worked for Studio 360, WNYC's Peabody Award-winning show about art, culture, and creativity.
In case you missed it, Herman Cain sang on demand at today's National Press Club luncheon. It was a hymn, and it wasn't about pizza.
After getting grilled on everything from potential scandals to 9-9-9, the moderator asked Cain if he might grace the audience with a song. Cain's become known as the only Republican candidate not afraid to sing in public.
Cain played this moment brilliantly. He cracked a joke about how difficult it was just to speak in public 12 times a day, much less sing.
Then he introduced the song, a hymn called "He Looked Beyond My Faults," by stressing his faith. That's a smart move for a Republican presidential hopeful, especially considering that evangelical Christians hold a lot of sway in Iowa's early caucuses, and Cain may have some ground to make up with them following the allegation of a sex scandal, as Susan Page noted this morning.
Among other hits from the afternoon? Answering a question about how much of Barack Obama's political troubles stem from the color of his skin, Cain stated emphatically that race has nothing to do with it, and that the Tea Party wasn't racist.
"This many white people can't pretend that they like me," Cain said, to a big round of applause.
Cain's got a penchant for charisma, and he's developing a reputation for singing all along the campaign trail. Here's proof:
And while it wasn't a campaign stop, how can we forget this?