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Afternoon Fix: Gingrich says Cain has ‘right to try to recover’

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Newt Gingrich says not to count Herman Cain out, a shakeup in the Perry campaign, and Jon Huntsman won’t rule out an independent bid.

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EARLIER ON THE FIX:

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The Herman Cain collapse: Who benefits?

Herman Cain reassessing presidential candidacy

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Why Mitt Romney needs Herman Cain

WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:

* Some (faint) support for former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain from fellow candidate Newt Gingrich. “No one’s disqualified,” Gingrich told CBS News. “I think every candidate has the right to try to recover.” More specifically, he added, “I like Herman Cain personally ... I think it must be very painful to go through what he’s going through right now.”

* A shakeup in the campaign of Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has been made official. According to Politico Joe Allbaugh, who ran George W. Bush’s 2000 campaign, is now Perry’s campaign manager. Former chief strategist Dave Carney, a longtime adviser to the governor, is now focused on New Hampshire. Pollster Tony Fabrizio, brought in with Allbaugh last month, is now Perry’s top strategist. However, spokesman Mark Miner says Rob Johnson is still Perry’s campaign manager.

* At a Christian Science Monitor breakfast this morning, the co-founders of the Congressional Leadership Fund (a Republican super PAC dedicated to House races) said Democrats would likely pick up five to ten House seats in 2012. Democrats need to net 25 seats to take back the House.

* Quote of the day? Arizona state Sen. Lori Klein (R), the state chair of Cain’s campaign, told CBS of the allegations against her candidate that in politics, “we want a virgin to do a hooker's job.” She added that she’s known Cain for 12 years and he’s “never been anything but a gentlemen - and I am not an unattractive woman."

* The Club for Growth has endorsed former Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.) to replace Rep. Jeff Flake, who is running for Senate. The state map is up in the air, so it’s not clear yet how the district will look. (This post originally stated, incorrectly, that Salmon could face Reps. Ben Quayle or David Schweikert.)

WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:

* Former Utah governor Jon Huntsman won’t rule out running as an independent, although he also told the Boston Globe he doesn’t see it happening. It’s not totally hypothetical: a bipartisan group called Americans Elect is aiming to get a third, moderate candidate on the ballot in all 50 states.

* Speaking to college students in New Hampshire today Perry said, “Those who are going to be over 21 on November 12th, I ask for your support.” In case you didn’t know, the voting age in the U.S. is 18 and the presidential election is held on Nov. 6th. A spokesman said Perry merely “misspoke.”

* Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner (D) has filed papers to challenge Rep. Marcia Fudge (D) next year. Turner made a name for herself earlier this year by backing a government reform initiative that the black Democratic establishment pressured her to oppose. Fudge won a special election in 2008 to replace the late Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D).

* Reminding voters that Gingrich made enemies on both sides of the aisle when he was in the House, former Rep. Guy Molinari (R-N.Y.) called the candidate “evil” and the idea that he could be president “appalling.” Molinari, a supporter for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, said that when Gingrich comes to an event in Staten Island this weekend he “might do something.”

THE FIX MIX:

The most surreal of “Maury” episodes.

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Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake

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