Herman Cain, the once-surging but now-sagging GOP presidential candidate, is trying to get back on message with a new animated video explaining his proposed tax policy. The new video is smoking-free, though it does include some cartoon images of an "overgrown monster" (representing our current tax code, of course) and an undersized propeller plane flown by Obama. These images and several others are employed, like we said, to keep Cain on the message of his 9-9-9 tax code following his dip in the polls -- Real Clear Politics currently puts him in third place. But when that message got torn apart weeks ago for its comical resemblance to SimCity and its more serious effect the lower classes, it may be hard to peddle. The video, which doesn't feature Cain's image or voice once, still has a narrator touting the merits of 9-9-9: its transparency, its ability to stimulate business. 

Meanwhile, Cain reassures the AP today that he's still a strong candidate and has "nothing but optimism" for his campaign. He explains that his drop to third in the poll (following accusation against him of sexual harassment, which he doesn't mention by name) instead of sixth or seventh is a good sign. Despite the decidedly better production value of this video compared to the much-mocked smoking spot, maybe a cartoon isn't the best way to go about asserting your legitimacy.