(Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Cain referred to House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi as "Princess Nancy" during the debate—a curious statement for a candidate currently fending off charges he sexually harassed women in the past.
The former Godfather's Pizza chief made the remark while accusing Pelosi of shelving a Republican plan to fix health care.
"You didn't hear about it in the previous Congress because Princess Nancy sent it to committee, and it stayed there," Cain declared.
His statement was later repeated by his campaign in a message to Cain's followers on Twitter. But after the debate, Cain instantly began walking back the remark.
Asked in a post-debate interview with CNBC about whether he should have made the statement in light of the sexual harassment controversy he's facing, Cain admitted he had "probably" erred—but he stopped short of apologizing.
"That was a statement that I probably shouldn't have made, but I was trying to make a point," he told CNBC in a post-debate interview.
Four women have accused Cain of sexual harassment when he was head of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s. He's repeatedly denied the claims, calling the allegations "baseless."
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