Cain hauls $1 million in donations amid controversy

WASHINGTON Thu Nov 3, 2011 2:15pm EDT

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain steps up into his car after speaking to legislators in the Congressional Health Care Caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington November 2, 2011. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain steps up into his car after speaking to legislators in the Congressional Health Care Caucus on Capitol Hill in Washington November 2, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain has hauled $1 million in donations in recent days, a spokesman said on Thursday, despite accusations of sexual harassment that have consumed his campaign.

The former pizza executive's fundraising took a jump once his ascent in the polls began about a month ago. He brought in $2 million in the first two weeks of October. Until then, he had raised about $5.2 million after entering the race in May.

Cain, who says he is innocent of charges that he harassed at least three women during his tenure at the National Restaurant Association, appears to be raising money at an even faster clip this week. The harassment charges first emerged on Sunday and the campaign has raised $1 million since then.

"Mr. Cain's supporters around the country have rallied around him, and we have been encouraged by their strong showing," spokesman J.D. Gordon said in an email.

The Cain campaign, in an email to backers seeking contributions on Thursday, said "Republican candidates" and the "liberal media" are trying to derail his campaign.

Cain had been fledging in the polls before several strong debate performances and a surprise win in a Florida straw poll.

Although a favorite of the conservative Tea Party movement, he is still far behind the front-runners in the cash race.

Former governor Mitt Romney has raised about $32 million so far, while Texas governor Rick Perry, whose campaign got a late start, has pulled in about $17 million as of September 30, the latest reporting deadline to U.S. regulators.

(Editing by Jackie Frank)

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