Republican presidential hopeful and Tea Party-backed candidate Herman Cain in an interview with The New York Times Magazine questioned whether President Obama was “a real Black man.”

“A real Black man is not timid about making the right decisions,” Cain said.

“It is documented that his mother was White and his father was from Africa,” he continued. “If he wants to call himself Black, fine. If he wants to call himself African-American, fine.”

In the question and answer session with the magazine Cain went even further, saying Obama was not a strong Black man with whom he could identify.

“I identify with a strong Black man like Martin Luther King Jr., or my dad, Luther Cain Jr., who didn’t have a lot of formal education, but he had a Ph.D. in common sense,” Cain said.

Cain has created frequent controversy during his short presidential campaign, including a recent sparring match with “Daily Show” host John Stewart, whom he called a racist following a segment mocking Cain.

“But the thing more so than the whole race issue, which I don’t want to get into, Jon Stewart does not like me, in my opinion, because I’m an American Black conservative,” Cain told Fox News. “Because I’m Black and conservative, I think he probably has a bigger problem with that than he does the whole race thing.”

But the Rev. Al Sharpton also had strong words for Cain in an appearance on MSNBC’s “The Ed Show” and, while praising Cain’s success in business, defended Stewart.

“I don’t like your policies,” Sharpton said of Cain. “I’m as Black as you. I’m not mocking you. I’m saying what you are saying is wrong…. Your policies are a joke.”