Cain says he 'won't run away from criticism' in push for Fed seat

Herman Cain said Thursday that he intends to pursue a spot on the Federal Reserve Board and will not “run away from criticism.”

Cain said in a Fox Business Network interview that he will not withdraw from consideration for a Fed nomination, floated by President TrumpDonald John TrumpWhat the Mueller report tells us about Putin, Russia and Trump's election Fox's Brit Hume fires back at Trump's criticism of the channel Anti-US trade war song going viral in China MORE this month, even though he appears to lack the votes needed in the Senate and the White House says it is interviewing for replacement nominees.

“This noise chamber causes a lot of people, including senators, to get wishy-washy, but it doesn't cause me to want to withdraw,” Cain said on “Varney & Co.”

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“I'm not withdrawing. That's not my nature,” he added.

GOP Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiOvernight Health Care — Presented by Campaign for Accountability — House passes drug pricing bills amid ObamaCare row | Senate Republicans running away from Alabama abortion law | Ocasio-Cortez confronts CEO over K drug price tag Senate Republicans running away from Alabama abortion law Bipartisan senators unveil measure to end surprise medical bills MORE (Alaska), Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyOvernight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — McConnell, Kaine offer bill to raise tobacco buying age to 21 | Measles outbreak spreads to 24 states | Pro-ObamaCare group launches ad blitz to protect Dems Dem senator: Many Republicans 'privately expressed concerns' about Mueller findings Romney expresses opposition to Alabama abortion ban MORE (Utah), Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerSenate Republicans running away from Alabama abortion law Frustrated GOP senators want answers from Trump on Iran Graham: Trump officials not adequately briefing on Iran threat MORE (Colo.) and Kevin CramerKevin John CramerBolton emerges as flashpoint in GOP debate on Iran Trump's immigration push faces Capitol Hill buzzsaw Lawmakers introduce legislation to improve cyber workforce funding MORE (N.D.) said last week they would not vote for Cain, all but dooming his potential nomination.

With four of the 53 Senate Republicans opposed to Cain and others lobbying behind the scenes against his nomination, he would need the support of all other GOP senators and a Senate Democrat to be confirmed, an unlikely prospect.

Cain said Thursday he was undeterred by the backlash to his nomination and was “simply not going to allow“ critics to derail his bid.

“Their reservations do not cause me to run away,” Cain said. “Three of the four, Stuart, have never met me, I haven't met them, and I doubt if they know anything about my background. So, I don't run away from criticism.”

Republicans have expressed concerns about Cain’s character and background, citing the multiple allegations of sexual harassment that derailed his 2012 presidential bid.

Cain was accused of sexual harassment by four women who worked for him at the National Restaurant Association, a Washington, D.C. trade group he led form 1996-1998. He has denied all of the allegations, but reached settlements with two of his accusers.

“There is no ‘there’ there with my past behavior with women,” Cain said, calling the claims “unfounded and not true.”

“The Democrats are going to want to try to embarrass me, but they're not going to embarrass me because I'm not going to allow them to turn my confirmation, if I get there, into a circus,” Cain added.

While Trump and his aides have remained somewhat supportive of Cain, the White House appears to be nudging him toward withdrawing his name from consideration.

Larry Kudlow, director of the White House National Economic Council, told reporters Tuesday that the administration is interviewing other potential Fed nominees to replace Cain and Stephen Moore, whom Trump also said he would appoint to the bank. Neither has been formally nominated.

“I think at the end of the day, it will probably be up to Herman Cain to stay in that process or not,” Kudlow said. “As far as we’re concerned, he’s still in that process and it’s proceeding in an orderly way."

Cain responded in a Wednesday interview that “what Kudlow was doing was giving me an out, and I appreciate that, but I don’t want an out."

“You know that the president is a fighter, and Kudlow is a fighter. They might be getting a lot of blowback from some folks, I don’t know. But I don’t think they’re getting uncomfortable with it,” Cain told The Wall Street Journal.