Herman Cain, Former Republican Presidential Candidate, Dies from COVID-19 at 74

Herman Cain

A post on Cain's website states Cain was taken to the hospital by ambulance when he started having trouble breathing.

He ran as a presidential candidate in 2011.

Cain was considered at an increased risk for coronavirus due to his age and history with cancer, according to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. Cain fell ill shortly after attending President Trump's rally in Tulsa on June 20. "But we have no choice but to seek and find God's strength and comfort to deal with it", staffer Dan Calabrese wrote in an obituary posted on HermanCain.com Thursday.

The day before he was hospitalized, Cain sent a tweet expressing support for the Trump campaign's decision not to require masks at a July 4 Independence Day celebration held at Mount Rushmore. Cain, who was an ardent Trump supporter, tweeted out a photo of himself at the rally where neither he, nor those surrounding him, were wearing masks.

Cain had attended a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, according to reports in June.

Cain had entered an Atlanta-area hospital for treatment on July 1. He advocated for a sweeping tax reform plan that he called "9-9-9" which would have replaced nearly all current taxes with a 9% income tax, a 9% corporate tax and a 9% national sales tax. Mr. Cain went to Morehouse College and earned a master's degree at Purdue University before becoming a vice president at Pillsbury.

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Cain, who successfully steered food chains like Burger King and Godfather's Pizza to profitability and served as chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, shot to prominence in 2012 when he launched a bid to be the Republican presidential nominee. During the campaign allegations of sexual harassment surfaced from his time as head of the National Restaurant Association.

One of his first brushes with national fame came in 1994, when he challenged President Bill Clinton on his health care legislation during a televised town-hall-style meeting.

"When I got back to Omaha, I registered as a Republican", he said.

The 9-9-9 plan that propelled Cain to the top tier of 2012 candidates would have replaced the prevailing, endlessly complicated tax code with a 9% business transactions tax, a 9% personal income tax and a 9% federal sales tax.

He leaves behind a wife, two children and several grandchildren.

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