WASHINGTON — Herman Cain is no longer running for president. He doesn’t think he’s likely to be picked as the eventual nominee’s running mate, either. But he does have a Cabinet post in mind should the GOP win the White House next fall: secretary of defense.

Cain shared the idea with ABC’s Barbara Walters during her annual special on the “10 Most Fascinating People.” And the veteran journalist was just a bit surprised.

“What?!” she asked. “Not Treasury?”

Cain said he thought he’d be a good pick because he wants to “influence rebuilding our military the way it should be.”

Walters, still stunned, reminded Cain of his struggles during the campaign with topics like Libya.

“I have been doing my homework ever since that difficulty,” Cain said.

In a way, defense seems like a good fit for Cain. He’s still playing defense even as a non-candidate over allegations that surfaced just as his campaign peaked about marital infidelity and sexual harassment.

“I believe that in the court of public opinion I have not been treated fairly. Because the accusations were false, but they continued to be spun as if they were true,” he told Walters.

Did he think, she asked, that his race played a role?

“Yes, because I happen to believe that the Democrats did not want an accomplished, articulate, optimistic black man to face President Obama,” he said. “I can’t prove that, Barbara, but I do believe that.”

Though the charges were untrue, he maintained, he had to drop his campaign because of the pain they caused his family. “They were not going to stop,” he said.

Denying assault, Rodney Atkins files for divorce

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Rodney Atkins has filed for divorce and his attorney denied Thursday the country singer assaulted his wife last month.

Atkins was arrested Nov. 21 and charged with domestic assault. His wife, Tammy Jo Atkins, told police that after a night of heavy drinking he assaulted her and tried to suffocate her with a pillow. Attorney Rose Palermo said in a statement the allegations of violence are “completely untrue” and that the argument between the couple did not become physical.

The platinum-selling singer, known for No. 1 hits including “If You’re Going Through Hell (Before the Devil Even Knows),” “Take a Back Road” and “Watching You,” decided to file for divorce as a result of the false statement to police, the statement says.

Paris a star in many Globe nominations

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. – Ah, Paris. City of Light. Land of romance. Gobbler of all the best Golden Globe nominations.

Presented by overseas reporters based in Hollywood, the Globes may be a worldwide affair, but this time, they have a real French flair. The silent film “The Artist,” from French filmmaker Michel Havanavicius, led with six nominations Thursday, while the field includes Woody Allen’s French romance “Midnight in Paris” and Martin Scorsese’s Paris adventure “Hugo.”

Steven Spielberg has two nominees with French connections: the World War I epic “War Horse,” set partly in France’s countryside, and the animated tale “The Adventures of Tintin,” based on comic-book stories created in France’s neighbor, Belgium.

“Of course, the foreign press is going to like France,” joked Seth Rogen, producer and co-star of the cancer tale “50/50,” which has two nominations and no obvious French links.

“War Horse” and “Hugo” are up for best drama, along with two George Clooney films, the Hawaiian family story “The Descendants” and the political thriller “The Ides of March”; the 1960s racial saga “The Help”; and Brad Pitt’s baseball tale “Moneyball.”

“The Artist,” “50/50” and “Midnight in Paris” are competing for the Globes’ other best-picture prize – for a musical or comedy.