Up The Establishment: GOP Powerman Eric Cantor Loses Re-Election Bid to Tea Partier

Despite his million-dollar re-election campaign, number two establishment Republican Eric Cantor of Virginia just lost his re-election bid to one of those eeeevil “Tea Party” Republicans in a hard-fought primary race. This is a big, big, BIG loss for the establishment GOP. (John Boehner hardest hit.)

With most of the votes officially in, Brat won the 7th District primary with 56 percent to Cantors dismal 44 percent. Cantor even lost his own home district, Henrico County!

Cantor lost to Randolph-Macon College economics professor Dave Brat, a novice politician who made his outsider status his main selling point.

In fact, this is an historic win. As Huffy Post noted, “No sitting House majority leader has lost since 1899.”

Brat was backed by Tea Partiers in Virginia and also by talk show host Laura Ingraham.

Immigration figured prominently in the campaign because Cantor is well known as a full-on amnesty supporter.

As USA Today put it:

David Wasserman, an elections expert with the non-partisan Cook Political Report, wrote an analysis Tuesday evening: “Cantor’s leadership position, unwillingness to prolong last October’s government shutdown, far-fetched attacks on Brat, and stylistic clash with Virginia’s gun-owning, very conservative 7th (district) all played a role in the ‘perfect storm’ of base anger that engulfed him.”

This means that the GOP is going to have to look for a House Majority leader, the number two man just below the Speaker of the House.

This really is a blow to the establishment.

Shortlink:

Posted by on June 10, 2014.
Filed under Big government, Congress, Conservatives, corruption, Culture Of Corruption, Elections.
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago-based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's BigGovernment.com and BigJournalism.com, RightWingNews.com, CanadaFreePress.com, RightPundits.com, StoptheACLU.com, Human Events Magazine, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events.He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on amazon.com. He is also the owner and operator of PubliusForum.com. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions, EMAIL Warner Todd Huston: igcolonel .at. hotmail.com"The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it." --Samuel Johnson

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  • MFMartelli

    Most of the analyses of Eric Cantor’s loss that I’ve seen so far are lacking. So far, the prominent and coalescing factors to nail Cantor’s political coffin have been ignored. He was generally perceived by his constituents as an arrogant and self serving political climber who became increasingly more absent and dismissive and negligent of his own district and its concerns. His strongest supporters were disillusioned when his attention was almost exclusively focused on national issues and his national agenda, with very little attention left for constituent issues. When his previous strongest supporters considered him arrogantly absent, unreachable and self serving, the seeds of revolt were sewn. I got at least 15 texts, several phone calls today, from repubs and dems, all advocating anti- Cantor vote turnout. Cantor alienated and angered too much of his constituent base over the last many years. He did himself no favor by suddenly appearing last minute with 5 mil in last minute false attack ads. The last minute appearance only advertised his absence, while calling an ultra conservative a liberal college professor only advertised a conservative alternative without the national political agenda and fundraising Washington stigma. When you add in the angry democratic votes against him, an unstoppable and impassioned coalition revolt vote was expressed. MFM

    • jim_m

      BINGO!

      • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

        Piss off people long enough, and you lose their support. What a concept!

    • JWH

      ====================================================
      He was generally perceived by his constituents as an arrogant and self serving political climber who became increasingly more absent and dismissive and negligent of his own district and its concerns.
      ====================================================

      That’s also why Jesse Helms and Strom Thurmond held on as long as they did. Their conservatism appealed to voters in their respective states, but the real key to their long tenure was that they took care of their constituents.

      • JWH

        Of course, that was also back in the days when congressional races weren’t as nationalized as they are now.

        • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

          Congressional districts are too big.

          • JWH

            Congressional districts are just a plain mess. If it were up to me, we’d get rid of them. I think it would be interesting to turn each state into what is effectively a multimember House district. I’m not sure how the mechanics of it would work, but I think people would vote for parties, rather than individuals, and the district’s seats would be split between the parties on a pro rata basis, as long as they are certain vote threshold (say, at least 5 percent of the vote).

          • Commander_Chico

            I think what you propose could be done, but it’s not a good idea.

            Proportional representation brings a lot of small nutball parties. As bad as things are now with the Republicrats, it would be worse having little Fascist parties, Communist parties, religious parties, racial parties having the balance of power, the way they do in Israel, Italy and Iraq.

          • JWH

            Would that necessarily be a bad thing? I think there’s something to be said for letting the nutballs have a shot at power — even a little bit of power — rather than forcing them to join the center-left or center-right party.

          • Commander_Chico

            The problem that the nutballs become the swing votes in the legislature, and one major party or the other has to cater to their nutball demands. This is the problem of Israeli politics.

          • jim_m

            Nice Chico. Blame it once more on the Jews. Never mind that the parliamentary system they use is common throughout Europe and that other nations like France and Italy have demonstrated that they are far more unstable than Israel.

            Is there anything that you won’t blame on the Jews? Other than obviously blaming it on Bush and/or Cheney?

          • jim_m

            damn, Chico. Proportional representation is about the only way your nutball views would ever get any representation. You should be all for it.

  • Commander_Chico

    Cantor is another chickenhawk. He was always beating the drum for war with Iran. Good riddance.

    • Jwb10001

      Dude you left a few names off your list of war mongering chickhawks, names like Clinton, Biden, Kerry etal. But then you’ve proved beyond all doubt that you are nothing but a political hack of the first order. By the way no one is more closely aligned with the bastards on wall street than your best buddies Obama and Clinton but again that’s the partisan hackery at work.

      • Commander_Chico

        I hope you can get over your grief over Cantor’s loss.

        • Jwb10001

          That’s a hell of a leap even for you. How do you get that I give a damn about Eric Cantor? Personally I’d like to see all the a-hole incumbents tossed as rudely as possible. Maybe your Chico predicts wiring has gone goofy just like your political thinking.

          • Commander_Chico

            You seemed to be offended by my saying Cantor was a chickenhawk. How many times was he on Face the Nation pimping for bombing Iran? Seemed like every other week.

          • Jwb10001

            I’m not offended by anything you say, I’m simply pointing out that you selective sling around the chickenhawk slur. Same with the oligarch bull crap.

          • Commander_Chico

            “Chickenhawk” is a matter of degree as well as qualification.

            It’s chicken (did not volunteer for military service) + hawk (advocates war to great degree).

            For example, you named Kerry. Kerry is not a chickenhawk because he volunteered for Vietnam and actually went there. GW Bush is not a chickenhawk, because he did volunteer for military service.

            Hillary is a chickenhawk, Bill seems to be less so. It’s not like Bill got into a lot of wars during his term, not really a hawk.

            Hillary is one of those liberal R2P warmongers and I will never vote for her. I am also afraid she will launch the nukes just to get even with Bill and his many mistresses.

            Cantor — he never saw a war he didn’t want someone (else) to fight. Extreme chickenhawkery, like Cheney.

          • Jwb10001

            I know what the definition of Chickhawk is dumb ass (I also know that conservatives that did server are war mongers not chickenhawks), you don’t need to spell it out for me. What you don’t seem to understand is your giving one side a pass (Bill didn’t start many wars) and plastering the other side is complete partisan bull shit. Did Bill Clinton have 3000 american civilians killed on his watch? No, did he cowardly lob missiles at some bull shit target in Iraq to shut up the VRC from talking about Monica, yes. Did John Kerry vote for Iraq and then endlessly undermine the effort, yes. That makes him worse than your supposed chickenhawks he’s an opportunist that gains personally from the deaths of those you claim to care so much about. That bastard is the absolute worst example of a self serving POS with zero redeeming value. It’s fitting that you would use him as an example of a non chickenhawk. I guess he deserves a category all his own. You are a blind partisan you hate conservatives and will lie and exaggerate to paint them in the worst possible light while giving Obama and Clinton and Kerry and others a pass.

          • Commander_Chico

            Look, compared to Cheney, Kerry is run-of-the-mill. That supposed “conservative” did more to trash the Constitution and weaken America than anyone else.

            I think he and Rumsfeld were behind the October 2011 anthrax attacks, but the FBI solved the case after years when the second suspect they had “killed himself.”

          • Jwb10001

            Oh my god now Cheney and Rumsfeld sent anthrax? Good lord Chico, now I know your nuts. I suppose the beltway shooters were Cheney’s guys too? I forget was it Cheney or Bush that bombed the WTC?

          • Commander_Chico

            Don’t you think the anthrax fit in very well with the Iraq WMD war propaganda? They were blaming Iraq right off the bat.

            Isn’t it strange that letters were sent only to Democrats, Daschle and Leahy? And Cheney hated Leahy?

            Leahy said:

            “I believe there are others involved, either as accessories before or accessories after the fact. I believe that there are others out there. I believe there are others who could be charged with murder.”

            Then the whole bumbling FBI investigation, going after Steven Hatfill and then missing Bruce Ivins until he allegedly killed himself – in 2008!

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            I think you need to get professional help.

          • Jwb10001

            No I think anyone that thinks the Vice President and the Sec of Def would send anthrax through the mail is a complete lunatic, in fact the kind of lunatic that might send anthrax through the mail.

          • jim_m

            This is nothing new. Chico has long been outed as a troother.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            chicka sets a new low:

            I think he [former Vice President Cheney] and [former Secretary of Defense] Rumsfeld were behind the October 2001 anthrax attacks, but the FBI solved the case after years when the second suspect they had “killed himself.”>

            The evidence he provides in support of this grave and extraordinary accusation?

            Hand waving.

          • Commander_Chico

            I just have a strong suspicion based on motive and cui bono?, true.

            Anyone has to admit that the whole investigation stank.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            You have a strong projection based on how you and your fellow travelers think and act.

          • jim_m

            Yes I think he is on the precipice of acting out in some lunatic way. He will justify his terrorist act by claiming that if he had not then some conservative(most likely his deceased victims) would have done it.

          • jim_m
          • jim_m

            I think the only thing lower would be Holocaust denial, and he’s come pretty close on that in the past.

          • jim_m

            THAT is hysterically funny!

            SO Cheney was behind the Anthrax attacks and Bush was complicit in 9/11. You are a hoot.

            Now let us ask why Bruce constantly votes your comments up. Does Bruce believe this stuff too? Does he have the integrity to call it the crap that it is? I doubt it.

          • Commander_Chico

            OK, you chumps can believe it was the work of one man, Hatfill, errr, no, Ivins. Even though it fit so well into the bullshit war narrative of forged Niger uranium documents, anthrax vans, aluminum tubes, etc.

            Just don’t tell me that you think Cheney and Rumsfeld were too moral to do it.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            Seek professional help.

          • jim_m

            There is no evidence what so ever to back up your claim other than blind ideologically drive hate. You are the kind of person that goes off on some terrorist spree like Ted Kaczynski.You are a dangerous person and should be locked away from society for the rest of your natural life.

          • Commander_Chico

            It’s like those murder cases which happen from time to time.

            Someone disappears or is killed. There is someone with a strong motive, but no evidence. Everyone “knows” who did it, but the guy can’t be charged.

            Ivins was only blamed after he killed himself in 2008. How convenient.

            I’m not the only one with suspicions:

            Prime Suspect: Dick Cheney and the anthrax attacks

          • jim_m

            Get help before you hurt someone.

          • Commander_Chico
          • jim_m

            Nobody except people having hallucinatory fantasies thinks this.

          • Commander_Chico

            There are a lot of people who suspect it. It’s a motive / circumstantial case.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            As in a statistically significant number of the 5,000,000,000 persons resident on this rock?

            You and your shadow are not statistically significant.

          • Commander_Chico

            Cheney hated Leahy, once told him to go fuck himself. Not exactly a nice guy.

            It’s crazy to think that the FBI could not bust Ivins for 7 years, tried to frame an innocent guy (Hatfill) like Richard Jewell, then solved the case once the “real” culprit, Ivins committed suicide.

            C’mon . . . .

          • jim_m

            Seriously? If we locked every politician who said that to another politician we would depopulate DC overnight.

            Get a grip you fascist freak.

          • Commander_Chico

            How was it that Ivins was not arrested, then after he’s dead there’s all of this alleged evidence against him?

            How is it that even though Ivins was allegedly this nutball working in the lab, they blame another guy, Hatfill?

          • jim_m

            Look, it doesn’t matter what happened with any real suspects. That bears no relation to your baseless, wild, fantastical, hallucinatory, bogus and completely hateful and ideologically driven accusations.

            Don’t go telling me about an F’d up FBI investigation. Show me proof that you aren’t a mentally ill lunatic that should be shunned from normal society and locked away before you hurt yourself and/or others.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            Because absent an overt act or statement the FBI lacked cause for an arrest warrant.

            QED.

          • Retired military

            Chico’s theories makes Harry Reid’s screeds sound sane.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            If we had Crazy Control you would be locked up by now.

            Bring on Crazy Control!

          • jim_m

            It’s a bullshit case. at one point 35% of dems believed in the troother argument that steel cannot be melted. How the F do you think they make it?

            You’re an idiot and arguably a danger to society.

          • Commander_Chico

            I am only talking about anthrax 2001.

            There is circumstantial evidence of other conspiracies in the USA’s history, though. For example, James Earl Ray did not act alone.

          • jim_m

            You do realize that whatever little credibility you have with the readers of this blog you have just completely, utterly and irrevocably shredded.

            And your argument is that there have been conspiracies in the past, therefore there must be a conspiracy here? WTF Chico. Go commit yourself for some serious psychiatric help. A few months in the psych ward would do you some good(it may take quite a bit longer).

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            Capture this thread for future use…

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            Capture this thread for future use…

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            And the moon landings were faked, using 1970′s technology.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            That only goes to show that in a pool of 5,000,000,000 people there is one who is as (or more) irrational than you.

            Time and past time for Crazy Control.

          • Retired military

            Chico ignores evidence that doesn’t support him.

          • Jwb10001

            That would be ALL the evidence because there isn’t a shred that would support his lunatic accusation.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            It would be profoundly sad on the part of anyone I cared about. In this particular instance, it is indeed hysterically funny.

          • Jwb10001

            Chico is seriously paranoid, he maybe so f’ed up he could be a problem. I sure hope he doesn’t have any guns.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            He’s barking mad.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            He’s barking mad.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            If you want to offend us squeeze excrement out between your teeth with your tongue.

    • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

      Chicka’s disparagement is the first good thing I’ve heard about former Representative Cantor…

      • Commander_Chico

        We know you’re a neocon in your dark heart.

        • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

          Like so much of what a so disant cognoscenti believes…

  • Paul Hooson

    This might be a sign of a very strong anti-incumbent mood among voters for November where many voters might be voting to change many politicians just to change them, not really looking at the philosophy. – Ronald Reagan found himself a surprise landslide winner in the same sort of environment in 1980.

  • Brucehenry
    • Commander_Chico

      There might be more elitist ball-sucking magazines than The New Yorker, and more unfunny apparatchicki than Borowitz, true.

      Of course TPTB will strike back, if for no other reason than Cantor’s slavery to Wall Street.

      I looked at Brat’s website:

      Government Surveillance/ Personal Freedoms – Dave believes that the Constitution does not need to be compromised for matters of national security. He supports the end of bulk phone and email data collection by the NSA, IRS, or any other branch of government.Eric Cantor voted for the National Defense and Authorization Act (H.R. 1960, 6/14/13) which authorizes the unconstitutional bulk data collection by the government under the PRISM program.

      Congressman Cantor voted against an amendment offered by Justin Amash that would have prevented the NSA from collecting phone records of individuals unless suspected of terrorism (H.R. 2397 Amendment 70).

      If Brat is going to be in Justin Amash’s mold and be against the police state and Cantor’s wars, he’s a big improvement.

      • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

        “There might be more elitist ball-sucking magazines than The New Yorker, and more unfunny apparatchiki than Borowitz, true.”

        I’m thinking “Mother Jones”, myself. The Birkenstock, more-organic-than-thou elite. Same mindset, just slightly different as far as the paint scheme and accessories goes. (That, and usually a lower income than the New Yorker targets.)

        As far as Brat goes – I really hope the guy’s got a pretty much stainless background. You don’t displace the DC elite without repercussions, and the media’s probably going to be pawing through his trash before a week’s out looking for something juicy they can use to smear him.

        • Commander_Chico

          Mother Jones has a tiny circulation compared to the New Yorker and has one cool feature that’s not elitist: The “We’re Still at War” photo feature.

          http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2014/06/were-still-war-photo-day-june-10-2014

          http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2014/05/were-still-war-photo-day-may-29-2014

          • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

            That their circulation is so tiny just shows how important and elite they are.
            (Or irrelevant – it’s kind of hard to tell any more, right?)

          • Commander_Chico

            Look at the ads – that tells you what the readership is. New Yorker is all luxury goods.

            Yes, they will be trying to make Brat into a freak but he’s got an impressive resume.

          • jim_m

            And yet it caters to the far left. That sort of lays the lie to the notion that the left represents the common man.

          • Commander_Chico

            The New Yorker caters to the eastern elite but mostly to those who aspire to be members of it. Paul Fussell or someone did a takedown of the class aspirations associated with it.

      • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

        One suspects you would know about ball sucking.

      • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

        One suspects you would know about ball sucking.

    • jim_m

      Yes, Bruce, the New Yorker is filled with radically far left columnists who regularly beclown themselves with intolerant and bigoted statements. If you find their embarrassment funny I could understand that.

      • Brucehenry

        I was getting the Borowitz Report daily in my email inbox before the New Yorker picked him up. The guy’s funny imo.

    • alanstorm

      And we should care what a self-important, ultra-liberal, brain-dead New Yorker “thinks” . . .why, exactly?

  • LiberalNightmare

    Thats odd, I thought the tea party was dead.

    • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

      The reports of the death of the Tea Party seem to have been both pre-mature and exaggerated.

      • jim_m

        The TEA Party was a manifestation of the GOP base and its priorities. For the TEA Party to die the entire GOP base would have to disappear or otherwise abandon their political beliefs.

  • jim_m

    Cantor had lost the confidence of his district. It went Romney +15(IIRC) so this should be a safe GOP district nonetheless. But I would hesitate to say that this was a TEA Party victory only as there were many factors that contributed to Cantor’s demise, not the least being his insistence on backing an amnesty bill this year. His recent support for obama’s refusal to deport children and the subsequent flood of parentless children across our border hurt him right before the election. If you are going to be tone deaf don’t be deaf to what your own voters are trying to tell you.

  • jim_m

    One thing is certain: This makes immigration a radioactive issue in the House until after the election.

    • Commander_Chico

      Yes, it will be spun as immigration only, not warmongering, police-state surveillance, and crony capitalism. But you can be sure incumbents will be shifting their views on those issues, too.

      • jim_m

        I don’t think that those were inconsequential, but the fact is that immigration was the primary focus of the campaign in the closing weeks.

        • Commander_Chico

          Ok, I will take your word on it. I am sure that was important too. All part of the same screw American workers mentality.

        • MFMartelli

          The post election polls are in, and they confirm that Cantor was disliked by his base, primarily (see my earlier post for why; and secondarily, democrats, but they only made up an estimated half of Cantor’s margin of loss) and that immigration had little to do with it…Cantor was actually more anti immigration than his district (favoring it was a slight majority of repubs). But, pretty much any anti-Cantor criticism caught fire in the final two weeks in a synergestic revolt against him… But, people sell B.S. based on their projected opinions and bias confirming and promoting rationalizations … I was there and saw it, and don’t need to inject my biases!

          • jim_m

            I’m unclear how you characterize Cantor as anti-immigration when he has already come out as in favor of amnesty and even after losing the primary is saying that we need to pass an amnesty bill.

            That pretty much disqualifies him as anti-immigration.

            I did read an interesting take on the primary where they claimed that worse than Cantor’s stance on immigration was the transparent lies he was telling about it. The claim was that more damaging than his position was his being caught in the outright lie to his constituents.

          • MFMartelli

            He did not support amnesty. This was covered clearly and fact checked as mostly false. He did express sympathy for the illegal immigrant children born (not parents) in this country who knew no other country, but sympathy was the extent of it, and he blocked and guaranteed to block any immigration reform bills…But, you can argue with the facts and post election and exit polls (or the facts on the ground) if you like and decide you want to believe immigration was an important issue. You can believe that political climbing, absence from home district and ignoring and dismissing your constituency (i.e., all politics is local) isn’t true or the most important factor, but again, you will have to dismiss the exit polls and the overwhelming number of previously strongly supportive repubs (including ones who drafted him to run in the first place some 11 or so years ago) that I know who have become increasingly disgruntled about his absence, refusal to have town meetings, failure to explain his votes, failure to meet with them, relegate them to staff responses to their communications, etc. Heck, local TV news covering people in line voting was replete with strongly worded complaints about this stuff… and nothing about immigration…

          • jim_m

            Yes, I know you said “more”, but I dispute the idea that you can characterize someone who is in favor of amnesty as anti-immigration in the first place. His district may be more pro immigration reform than he is but that doesn’t make him anti-immigration.

            In the current climate, saying that you are in favor of reformer is equivalent to saying that you are pro amnesty. He can’t go around with Gutierrez campaigning for reform and credibly claim to be anti-reform.

    • westcoastwiser

      Harder to read the outcome as VA is an ‘open primary’ state… voters don’t cast ballot by party… cross-overs are common…

      • jim_m

        And the evidence is that they did here, but the district is so heavily GOP that I don’t think that it necessarily means a drop off in support for the general election.

        • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

          Compare votes cast for Democratic candidates and the recorded partisan split for the district…