Cain announces candidacy for GOP presidential nomination

Herman Cain, a businessman and conservative radio talk show host, announced Saturday that he is officially running for the Republican presidential nomination. 

“At this hour, this moment, I came here to declare my candidacy for the Republican nomination for the president of the United States,” Cain said at a rally in Atlanta.

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Cain, the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza and the host of an Atlanta-based radio show, took aim at President Obama. 

“Hope and change ain’t working,” he said at the rally. “Hope and change is not a solution. Hope and change is not a job. Hope and change is not a new business.”

Cain has a long and successful business career — he was a vice president at Pillsbury and chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City — but has never held political office. He ran for U.S. Senate in Georgia in 2004, but lost in the primary.

His name recognition is relatively low among Republicans, according to a recent Gallup poll. Only 29 percent were familiar with Cain, but that same poll found that Cain generated the highest levels of enthusiasm among Republicans who recognize him.

Cain, who formed a presidential exploratory committee in January, said Obama “threw Israel under the bus” in a Middle East policy speech this week.

He also said the country has “slipped into an entitlement society” and called for a comprehensive energy plan.

“When Cain is in the White House we will be able to say, ‘Free at last, free at last, thank God All Mighty, this nation is free at last again,’” Cain said at the end of his remarks.

Cain will appear on “Fox News Sunday."