I was critical after last week's debate, not so much of Herman Cain per se, but of the fact that he has been unable to show he is competent in handling policy.Right Online and the Republican Leadership Conference both show it doesn't really matter right now with the crowds. They love him.In both New Orleans and Minneapolis, Cain pounded the Obama Administration, its profligate spending, and its growing out of touch with American values. The crowd hung on every word and, in Minneapolis, gave him more standing ovations than even Michele Bachmann.More and more polls are showing that Cain continues to go up in the polls. Karl Rove and Charles Krauthammer may think he isn't a serious candidate, but the voters love him enough that they have made him one.Cain is going to have to begin working the transition between being an insurgent campaign and a top tier campaign because he is now deeply, deeply relevant to the 2012 election.As a measure of both his and Michele Bachmann's impact, they came in fourth and third, respectively, in the RLC straw poll. Ron Paul, who came in first, bussed in students. Jon Huntsman, who came in second, bought up tickets in bulk. Neither Bachmann nor Cain took steps to boost the outcome in their favor and still managed to do phenomenally well.