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(CBS) — Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain proudly touted himself as a black conservative Saturday evening, and refused to back down from comments he has repeatedly made about African Americans who vote for Democrats being “brainwashed.” In an address at the Virginia Family Foundation’s annual gala – a fundraising event that drew about 1,100 people to the Greater Richmond Convention Center – Cain, a relatively new addition to the front of the pack in the race for the GOP nomination, said he had majored in math but “never took a course in political correctness.”

He hammered home the point when he defended controversial remarks he had made about the political leanings of black Americans. “[People ask], ‘Why do you think so many African-American and black people vote Democrat?’ I said, ‘Because too many of them are brainwashed.’ ‘Mr. Cain, that’s rather harsh, don’t you think? Don’t you think that’s rather insulting?'” Cain said in rehashing an interview he did with MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell on Thursday. “And I say, but if you look at the entire interview, you also noticed that I indicated that a large percentage of black Americans are thinking for themselves. What a novel idea. But there are some who are brainwashed.”

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