Cain says he's strong contender for GOP nomination

November 28, 2011 - 10:01 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain says he has "nothing but optimism" about his prospects for the party's nomination despite Newt Gingrich's recent rise in the polls and Mitt Romney's continued strength.

The business executive tells Fox News Channel he'll continue to push his tax simplification plan as well as his ideas on national security and energy, as the presidential caucuses and primaries draw near.

Without specifically referring to sexual harassment allegations he's denied, Cain says: "Here's the good news. We didn't drop all the way down to sixth or seventh. We dropped to third" in most polls. He says supporters "didn't defect because of all the noise that was going on.".

Cain says his ideas have "resonated with the people" and he feels comfortable engaging his campaign rivals in debate.