Categorized | Current Affairs

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor loses badly in GOP primary; Updated

B-b-but I thought the Tea Party was dead.  I guess not:

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has been defeated by a tea party-backed challenger in the Republican primary.

Economics professor Dave Brat won a stunning upset victory against Cantor on Tuesday in the 7th District Republican primary contest, which is in the Richmond area.

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 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.

With 90% of the precincts reporting, Brat has beaten the soon to be ex-Majority Leader by 11 points. In hindsight, maybe Cantor’s penchant for repeatedly reviving amnesty wasn’t the best strategy, despite what his DC handlers assured him. Seriously, this is a great victory by the grassroots over the establishment, especially given how unlikely it appeared a few short hours ago. I’ll close on a note of caution, however: Now that Cantor’s a lame duck, will he feel free to come out of the shadows, so to speak, and go all out to cut an amnesty deal with Obama?  It’s not unrealistic to envision a scenario in which Cantor is offered a plum job on K Street in return for using his final days in the House to pursue that end.

Ok, enough negativity … time to enjoy an adult beverage and a fine cigar.

Update: With 99% reporting, Brat is maintaining his lead and is up 55.6 to 44.4. Also, via Erick Erickson (h/t Hot Air), Virginia law bars Cantor from pulling a Lisa Murkowski in the general:

Update: As I savor Cantor’s concession speech, I’m amazed that he just thanked his political team for their "great work". This is the same team whose internal polling showed Cantor with a 34-point lead over Brat just 4 days ago! What, precisely, is he thanking his team for?

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  • qtdb7

    Laws and order. Are we a nation of laws or of men?

    Does CHARACTER matter anymore?
    A man’s RECORD is his CHARACTER.
    We the People MUST judge a person based on content of his/her CHARACTER.

    Ability will enable a person to get to the top, but GOOD CHARACTER will keep a person from falling.

    Citizen Sarah Palin could not clean up Alaska’s corruptions.
    Only Gov. Sarah Palin could clean up Alaska’s corruptions.

    Citizen Obama could not transform America.
    Only Pres. Obama could transform America.

    Only Pres. Sarah Palin could restore America.


      Nail + head meet hammer.

  • TSM_Admin

    Wow! Just got home from dinner and saw this as a headline on Breitbart and thought it was some kind of joke, then read it. Glad to see this guy go!

  • carolhaka

    Amen. Keep bringing it!

  • jester2939

    Whoa!!! Just got on and saw the news! Alright!

  • Jthom26837

    Just when We were out, they pull us back in.

    Palin Power to the max!!

  • 1776er

    Wow. Way to go Dave Brat. Who knew Eric Cantor was a weak post in the War of Posts. The Establishment’s Money can’t buy them love with the base.

  • DocBarry1

    Did Gov Palin ever make a statement re Brat?

    • Jthom26837

      Not to my knowledge she hasn’t. Not yet at least.

  • gilamonster8

    Ive been LMAO for ten min

  • Quiet_Righty

    I didn’t pay much attention to this race in VA. Did Brat have an endorsement from Palin?

    • pat


    • Exgunman

      Not that I saw or heard of…………….

  • FaithColeridge33

    I thought nothing was going to make me happier than Joni winning but this…THIS….LOL

  • toughluck2

    Thank you. Hopefully that will stop in its tracks the GOP’s suicide push for amnesty.

  • arcman46

    Ok, enough negativity … time to enjoy an adult beverage and a fine cigar.


  • PhilTan

    Great news and great updates. I hadn’t even heard this was a possibility. They showed a 34 point lead four days ago ? I’m hoping if nothing else this serves as a "dope slap" to Boehner, Ryan et al., who keep pushing amnesty. I know why the dem’s want it but what are these guy’s thinking. Also thanks for the update on VA law prohibiting a candidate from going into the general as a write in. Campaign mouthpiece Carl Cameron was mentioning that earlier. Did anybody here have an idea this could happen ? Really, were any poll’s showing Cantor loosing ?

  • CharterOakie

    WOW !!

  • JDCampbell

    Watching the GOP in a tailspin.
    The convention should prove interesting.

  • friskyness


  • senator20526

    Typical politicians….surrounding yourself with people that tell you what you want to hear… this case "am I winning/" Yes boss, by 30 points….

    • Keith M

      You are so right!

  • John_Frank

    Doug, thank you for this post.

    Interesting and likely accurate analysis by Erick Erickson (yes, I know), on why Cantor lost:

    Why Cantor Lost

    • Ting

      This is the most accurate assessment that I have read, except that he left out a crucial part: Dave Brat is a very talented campaigner, and a great candidate who was able to articulate his ideas in a positive way.

      • John_Frank

        —–> Dave Brat is a very talented campaigner, and a great candidate who was able to articulate his ideas in a positive way.


        P.S. Ting, thank you again for everything you did.

  • conservativemama

    On Fox and Friends this morning, could Brian Kilmeade have been more pathetic. In absolute mourning over Cantor’s loss.

    Here’s the stupidest spin I’ve heard. Cantor raised Brat’s profile by running against him, by mentioning him in ads. Sooooo what? There’s a problem with having a choice? That if Cantor won because no one knew there was a choice that would have been better?

    That’s like assuming everyone likes vanilla ice cream in a world where there’s no other choice. But once chocolate is introduced lots of people abandon vanilla. They didn’t love vanilla, they just chose it because that was the only choice. Come to think of it, that sounds like the elections in communist countries.

    Brat shows us that the voters are desperately looking for another choice. The message couldn’t be clearer.

  • blueniner

    In David Brat we have a " Mr. Smith Goes To Washington" like candidate, the trick will be to not be compromised by the Beltway ghouls and backroom "ceeegar chompers", with their,"this is how we do things here" meme!….Congrats David Brat!

    • myfairlady

      Well, hello there. Miss seeing you around. Don’t be a stranger.

      • blueniner

        Hi Milady.

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