Archive for Tuesday, June 10, 2014

House Majority Leader Cantor defeated in Virginia primary stunner

June 10, 2014


House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was defeated Tuesday by a little-known economics professor in Virginia’s Republican primary, a stunning upset and major victory for the tea party.

Cantor is the second-most powerful member of the U.S. House and was seen by some as a possible successor to the House speaker.

His loss to Dave Brat, a political novice with little money, marks a huge victory for the tea party movement, which supported Cantor just a few years ago.

Brat had been a thorn in Cantor’s side on the campaign, casting the congressman as a Washington insider who isn’t conservative enough. Last month, a feisty crowd of Brat supporters booed Cantor in front of his family at a local party convention.

His message apparently scored well with voters in the 7th District.

“There needs to be a change,” said Joe Mullins, who voted in Chesterfield County Tuesday. The engineering company employee said he has friends who tried to arrange town hall meetings with Cantor, who declined their invitations.

Tiffs between the GOP’s establishment and tea party factions have flared in Virginia since tea party favorite Ken Cuccinelli lost last year’s gubernatorial race. Cantor supporters have met with stiff resistance in trying to wrest control of the state party away from tea party enthusiasts, including in the Cantor’s home district.

Brat teaches at Randolph-Macon College, a small liberal arts school north of Richmond. He raised just more than $200,000 for his campaign, according to the most recent campaign finance reports.

Beltway-based groups also spent heavily in the race. The American Chemistry Council, whose members include many blue chip companies, spent more than $300,000 on TV ads promoting Cantor. It’s the group’s only independent expenditure so far this election year. Political arms of the American College of Radiology, the National Rifle Association and the National Association of Realtors also spent money on ads to promote Cantor.

Brat offset the cash disadvantage with endorsements from conservative activists like radio host Laura Ingraham, and with help from local tea party activists angry at Cantor.

Much of the campaign centered on immigration, where critics on both sides have recently taken aim at Cantor.

Brat has accused the House majority leader of being a top cheerleader for “amnesty” for immigrants in the U.S. illegally. Cantor has responded forcefully by boasting in mailers of blocking Senate plans “to give illegal aliens amnesty.”

It was a change in tone for Cantor, who has repeatedly voiced support for giving citizenship to certain immigrants brought illegally to the country as children. Cantor and House GOP leaders have advocated a step-by-step approach rather than the comprehensive bill backed by the Senate. They’ve made no move to bring legislation to a vote and appear increasingly unlikely to act this year.

Cantor, a former state legislator, was elected to Congress in 2000. He became majority leader in 2011.


Brock Masters 3 years, 6 months ago

Good news. I hope all pro amnesty candidates lose.

Scott Quenette 3 years, 6 months ago

So afraid of the im'grants. Cutting off the nose to spite your face.

Brock Masters 3 years, 6 months ago

Not afraid of legal immigrants. People who break the law are criminals not immigrants.

Amnesty is not immigration reform, it is rewarding criminal behavior. If the immigration system needs improving then improve it, but no amnesty for criminals .

I don't want immigrants coming here unchecked. We need to assess our needs and allow immigration but in a reasoned manner that doesn't put Americans at a disadvantage at getting employment.

A endless supply of workers, illegal or legal depresses the wages that Americans could be earning.

So not afraid of immigrants, just looking out for my fellow Americans who are unemployed.

3 years, 6 months ago

It's really embarrassing to watch. Internationally the GOP is a laughing stock & the tea Party is considered dangerous... they are so unsound. It's downright amazing & fascinating that this conservative fantasy has such a large amount of credibility that it has in the states. Hard to wrap one's head around...

Steve Jacob 3 years, 6 months ago

Low turnout in republican primaries has cost the party before. I swear, you step out of line in one issue and you get your head cut off. That's a big problem when you only have two political parties.

But it will be fun watching all the Republican presidential debates. I will even give them a tip, pick a governor. Anyone currently in the House/Senate is damaged goods.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 6 months ago

There are more than two political parties. They just don't get the press. Check this out and then tell me what you think.

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 6 months ago

One wonders if Eric Cantor is now in favor of unemployments benefits. :P

Cait McKnelly 3 years, 6 months ago

It was a joke, Captain. Now it's dead, Jim.

Richard Heckler 3 years, 6 months ago

Cantor will move to a lobbying position which is the nations other congress.

Tea Party,fundamentalist or ALEC they all vote the same under the dead GOP umbrella. Then again all are under the same financial umbrella.

Bob Smith 3 years, 6 months ago

Let us hope that many incumbents get returned to the private sector this year.

Phillip Chappuie 3 years, 6 months ago

Let us hope that those incumbents that return to the private sector stay out of the lemur markets. I hear that one is flooded with producers.

Bob Smith 3 years, 6 months ago

I discovered yesterday that there is a minor league baseball team in Laredo called the Lemurs. A road trip is in order.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 6 months ago

2014 Laredo Lemurs 2014 > Class Independent > 2014 American Association (South) Overall: 14-11 Scored 142 runs, Allowed 99 runs. Pythagorean W-L: 16-9

Affiliation: none or n/a Manager: Pete Incaviglia Represented: Laredo, TX Ballpark: n/a Attendance: n/a Other Years: 2013

Laredo Lemurs-Let's Go Lemurs, Let's Go!

Laredo Lemurs-Let's Go Lemurs, Let's Go! by Leslie Swearingen

Julius Nolan 3 years, 6 months ago

So who cares, I don't live in Laredo? Plus I stopped following baseball in 1994 with strike. greed from both sides finished me.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 6 months ago

Julius, a great many people care deeply about this. Trust me baseball major and minor did not stop when you stopped watching. And, a lot of us do love everything lemur just because they are so cute and sweet and adorable, not to mention very smart.

Don't be dissing my lemurs.

Let's go Lemurs, let's go!!! All fired up!!

Terry Snell II 3 years, 6 months ago

I enjoyed this story. He was out spent 5 million to a few hundred thousand. Im non affiliated and hope more people do this. We cant go forward with 2 deadlocked parties. Vote for a candidate that will get the job done, not because he is a Republican or Democrat. $1 gallon Gas, jobs, and lower taxes is a first step to recovery.

Kevin Elliott 3 years, 6 months ago

a part of the problem is that Virginia was going Purple. The GOP thusly Gerrymandered the heck out of the state creating districts that were full red and blocking out any moderate or democratic voices in the state...then the extreme right was not controllable.

That is not the entirety of the problem, but a good part of it. That is why I believe Gerrymandering by politicians should result in jail time, no matter the party. It is an assault on the very essence of American democracy.

Jim Phillips 3 years, 6 months ago

I love it when Liberals tell us how to "survive" politically. The Republican leadership was warned and they did not listen. Hopefully, this is just a sample of what's coming.

Leslie Swearingen 3 years, 6 months ago

They are playing the Kansas City minors on the 14th. Check out their home page. Sometimes these guys can play as well or better than the major leagues. I don't live in Boston or New York but I still watch the Red Sox and Yankees play. Ask George Will if he doesn't think all baseball is important and fascinating.

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