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UPDATED 11/10/11 11:09 a.m.
GLENVIEW, Ill. (CBS) — The Chicago area woman who publicly accused Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain of sexual harassment is back home in the Chicago area.
As CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports, Bialek spoke to CBS 2 around 8 a.m. Thursday, as she pulled out of the garage at her home in Glenview to drive her son to school.
She said it is “mommy day;” time to focus on her family. But she is not about to downplay her other role that’s captured the attention of the whole country.
Bialek has made a name for herself as an accuser: accusing a presidential candidate of inappropriate sexual conduct, and she said she is not backing down from her story.
“I know the truth. I know the truth, and it will come out,” she said.
But it’s Bialek’s word against Cain’s, and he he has adamantly denied allegations that he sexually harassed her 14 years ago.
During the Republican presidential debate in Michigan Wednesday night, the controversy was inevitably raised. The moderator asked why the American people should vote in a president if they feel there are character issues.
Cain responded, “The American people deserve better than someone being tried in the court of public opinion, based on unfounded accusations, and I value my character and integrity more than anything else.”
When asked if she is upset that Cain is going in front of the whole country saying her claims are false, she replied, “When you speak the truth, how can you be upset?”
Bialek also briefly addressed reporters Wednesday night. She said she expected her credibility to be questioned to the public.
“I knew, going into this that that would come up, about credibility or credit,” she said.
Finally, she told reporters, “I just want to go in, though, guys, I’m beat,” and went inside her house.
Cain’s campaign has questioned Bialek’s motives, citing her troubled history.
In 1991 and again in 2001, Bialek filed for bankruptcy.
A search of Cook County records revealed two liens have been filed against Bialek – one in 2006 by a company called Water Heaters Only, Inc., for almost $900; and another in 2009, by the IRS, for more than $5,000.
Bialek was also named in a nasty paternity and, later, custody lawsuit with the father of her now 13-year-old son.
She was also named in at least five civil lawsuits – for unpaid rent, credit card balances and loans, totaling more than $13,000.
But Bialek has said all along that she is not looking to make a penny from the allegations.
When asked what she had to gain, by going public with her allegations against Cain, Bialek said, “Absolutely nothing. I have so much to lose, but really nothing to gain.”
She left little to the imagination about the alleged harassment when she first came forward.
“He suddenly reached over and he put his hand on my leg, under my skirt and reached for my genitals,” Bialek said of her encounter with Cain in 1997. “He also grabbed my head and brought it towards his crotch.”
Bialek worked for the Educational Foundation of the National Restaurant Association in 1996 and 1997. Cain ran the trade group at the time and Bialek said she first met him at a trade convention.
Bialek’s attorney, Gloria Allred, noted on the Early Show this week that Bialek is a registered Republican and has not endorsed any other candidate, and all she wants is for Cain to admit to his actions.