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Cain on Libya: 'I got all this stuff twirling around in my head'

Herman Cain suffered his own memory lapse in response to a question about Libya just days after Rick Perry's campaign tumbled following Perry's debate misstep.

Cain struggled for an answer when asked by the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel whether he agreed with President Obama's approach toward Libya.

Cain said:

OK, Libya. [Pause] President Obama supported the uprising, correct? President Obama called for the removal of Khaddhafy. I just wanted to make sure we're talking about the same thing before I say, 'Yes, I agreed' or 'No I didn't agree.' I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason -- nope, that's a different one. [pause] I gotta go back and see. I got all this stuff twirling around in my head. Specifically, what are you asking me that I agree or not disagree with Obama?

Cain had previously criticized Obama's handling of the uprising in Libya in a debate this spring. Cain accused the administration of lacking clear objectives in Libya -- or, for that matter, Syria -- and called for the U.S. to develop a foreign policy strategy for each nation on earth.

The moment, though, invites parallels with Perry's moment of forgetfulness during last week's presidential debate. Perry struggled to remember the identity of the third federal agency he would eliminate.

Obama had weathered criticism from some GOP presidential contenders at the time for having authorized U.S. military airstrikes to aid the uprising against Kaddhafy's regime. Kaddhafy was captured and killed last month in Libya.

Cain has previously said that he didn't feel the need to master every detail of foreign policy issues, a sentiment he reiterated in his interview with the Journal-Sentinel, which was conducted on the record for about 30 minutes this morning.

I'm a much more deliberate decision-maker. It's a point that I keep coming back to. Some people want to say, 'Well, as president, you're supposed to know everything.' No you don't. I believe in having all the information, as much of it as I possibly can, rather than making a decision or making a statement about whether I totally agree or didn't agree, when I wasn't privy to the entire situation. There might be some things there that might have caused me to feel differently. So I'm not trying to hedge on the questions, it's just that that's my nature as a businessman -- I need to know the facts, as much as possible, I need to hear all the alternatives...I would want to hear all those views, look at the information, then I make the decision as the commander in chief.

This isn't the first time Cain has risked looking dismissive on foreign policy issues, either. He said, for instance, that he didn't feel the need to known the name of the president of Uzbekistan.

"I’m ready for the ‘gotcha’ questions and they’re already starting to come. And when they ask me who is the president of Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan I’m going to say, you know, I don’t know. Do you know?" he asked in an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network last month.