Eric Cantor Loses Primary
Last night House Majority Leader Eric Cantor became the first Majority Leader to lose in a primary, losing to economics professor Dave Brat. From Politico:
Big money couldn’t save Eric Cantor.
The darling of big Wall Street donors, the K Street business types and the Republican establishment went down in flames Tuesday, all the while crushing his no-name opponent with a 26-to-1 cash advantage in the money race.
Cantor, the House majority leader, raised nearly $5.5 million during the cycle, bolstered by investments from the American Chemistry Council, the American College of Radiology, the National Rifle Association, and the National Association of Realtors.
He lost to Dave Brat, a college professor with a $200,000 shoestring budget.
The result should be a wakeup call that with a fickle Republican primary electorate in an anti-incumbent, anti-Washington mood, no fundraising advantage can guarantee victory. Brat’s win is all the more stunning because like-minded outside groups didn’t buy TV ads, focusing on other prizes like GOP Senate primaries in Kentucky and Mississippi.
Cantor never lacked for cash, with a donor roll that read like a who’s who of Beltway power players. Once seen as a top contender for House speaker, he had the support of 377 political action committees representing almost every major corporate and special interest from all sectors of the economy, including airlines, telecom, energy, food, and manufacturing groups.
Eric Cantor also refused to answer Campaign for Liberty’s candidate survey, while Dave Brat answered 100 percent in favor of liberty.
UPDATE: Eric Cantor plans to resign as Majority Leader effective July 31.