The former Godfather’s Pizza C.E.O. who is likely to run for president says Donald Trump’s “bullying” leadership style was not the right fit for the presidency. Herman Cain has the never-held-office-before angle all to himself now that Trump has announced he won’t run in 2012.

“That is very good,” Cain said this afternoon of Trump’s exit from the political stage.  “…I’m very proud that I have never held public office because most of the people in Washington, D.C., they have held public office.” 

Trump’s name had soared to the top of national public opinion polls this year, but then sank to the bottom after the week in which President Obama released his long-form birth certificate and then announced he had ordered the successful raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Cain suggests he never considered Trump a serious contender for the Republican Party’s presidential nomination.

“I was never threatened or concerned about Donald Trump in the first place, to be perfectly honest, because bullying, being a bully is not a leadership strategy, not if you want to lead the United States of America,” Cain told a group of Iowa reporters this afternoon. “And so I was not surprised he is not running.”

Cain served as chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City for over a year and was president of the National Restaurant Association from 1996 to 1999. But Cain does not highlight those aspects of his resume, focusing instead on his “problem-solving” as a businessman.

“Knowing how Washington works isn’t necessarily an advantage,” Cain told reporters. “As a businessman going in, I don’t want to know how Washington works. I want to change Washington, D.C.  And so by not knowing how it is supposed to work, I can ask tough questions that will help change the culture. That’s my objective.”

A founder of the Des Moines Tea Party is escorting Cain around Des Moines today.  Cain is scheduled to be in Marshalltown and Cedar Rapids tomorrow. On Saturday in Atlanta — at what Cain described as “high noon” — Cain will make an announcement about his presidential ambitions.

Listen to Cain’s conversation with Iowa reporters.