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Cain to protesters: 'If you don't have a job and you're not rich, blame yourself'

Cain had little sympathy for the message of the protesters, who have generally been complaining about income disparity within the United States. Nearly 1,000 protesters were arrested over the weekend on the Brooklyn Bridge, and protests similar to those in Lower Manhattan have sprung up nationwide. 

"Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks, if you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself. …It is not a person's fault if they succeeded, it is a person's fault if they failed," Cain said.

Other protesters have pointed out that the banking industry played a role in the 2008 recession, and was not punished for it. Cain said that while he did blame the financial industry for its part in the financial collapse, he felt it was no longer responsible for poor economic conditions.

"They did have something to do with the crisis we went into in 2008, but we're not in 2008, we're in 2011," Cain said. Cain also blasted the protesters as "anti-capitalism."

The former pizza businessman has surged to the top tier of the Republican field, placing in ties for first or second place in recent national polls.