Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich, and Herman Cain, arguably more than any three presidential candidates in recent memory, quickly learned how to turn their failed campaigns into lucrative business opportunities.
Each of the three created large mailing lists, filled with supportive Republicans. Each of them monetized those lists successfully. And each have used their list to partner with some highly dubious enterprises.
Time reports today, for example, on Herman Cain’s list sending out a new message about President Obama secretly leading the United States toward the apocalypse.
The email was a sponsored message from Nathan Shepard, who identifies himself on his website as a “Bible scholar” who “decided that he must become a survival expert, train and prepare for the worst disaster in human history.”Shepard says that the United States is actually Babylon in the Book of Revelation, and “the end times” the prophets foretold will come for America in January 2017. He says America will be destroyed by Vladimir Putin’s Russia in World War III.
Good to know.
Cain’s sponsor, in this case, wants to sell you a $60 survival pack, which you’ll evidently need once the Obama-inspired apocalypse ends the world. As the Time report added, those on Herman Cain’s mailing list have also received messages from someone selling a “brain protection kit” of supplements designed to prevent Alzheimer’s triggers.
Gingrich’s list has been used in similar ways, as has Huckebee’s. Of course, of the three, only Huckabee is actually a presidential candidate this year, making his sketchy online operation that much uglier.
Remember this fascinating piece from Ben Adler in The New Republican about the trio’s lucrative operation?
While [Cain] has been particularly unabashed in his embrace of the practice, he is not the only past presidential candidate hawking sketchy products. Newt Gingrich now pings the e-mail subscribers to his Gingrich Productions with messages from an investment firm formed by a conspiracy theorist successfully sued for fraud by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Mike Huckabee uses his own production company’s list to blast out links to heart-disease fixes and can’t-miss annuities.The joke about Cain and Gingrich during the 2012 campaign was that they weren’t at all serious about their pursuits of the presidency but instead just lining up future paydays. After Huckabee, who’d parlayed a strong showing in 2008 into publishing deals and his own Fox News show, declined to run again, some wags snickered that his new livelihood must have been too hard to give up. Now all three seem to be proving the cynics right…. Collectively, Cain, Gingrich, and Huckabee are pioneering a new, more direct method for post-campaign buckraking. All it requires is some digitally savvy accomplices – and a total immunity to shame.
In an interview this month, Huckabee was pressed for an explanation of his unfortunate business practices. “You know, I don’t have to defend everything that I have ever done,” the Republican replied, specifically in response to questions about a ridiculous diabetes infomercial he starred in a few months ago.