With over 90% of the vote in, multiple media outlets are projecting that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) will lose his seat in the House by losing his primary by double digits.
Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) is trailing his tea party challenger David Brat 56%-44%. Cantor had comfortably won his previous reelection campaigns, but his margin of victory has been falling. Cantor won his race by 30% in 2006, 26% in 2008, 25% in 2010, and 17% in 2012, but those are still comfortable victories. There was nothing in the polling that suggested that Eric Cantor was in danger of losing his seat.
However, there were some signs of trouble back home in his district. Eric Cantor was booed and heckled by tea party activists at an event in his home district last month. Cantor enraged the right by helping to end the government shutdown, and supporting immigration reform.
It was assumed that Eric Cantor would be the next Speaker of the House after John Boehner steps down, but that won’t be happening now. Cantor was expected to win, and now he faces the same uncertain future that more than million Americans are facing because he refused to support an extension of unemployment benefits.
Democrats who are looking at the possibility of turning Cantor’s seat blue should not get their hopes up. Mitt Romney won Cantor’s district by 15 points over President Obama in 2012. John McCain beat President Obama by 7 points in 2008. George W. Bush won Cantor’s district by 23 points in 2004, and 24 points in 2000. This does not look like a good opportunity for a Democratic pick up. The tea partier will face Democratic nominee Jack Trammell.
The bad news is that Cantor’s defeat will likely terrify Republicans at all levels into going even more right. For the rest of this year, the nation can expect to be treated to a ratcheted up level of hysteria and insanity out of the Republican Party that will make the last five years look calm by comparison.
With 94% of the vote in, Rep. Cantor is trailing 56%-44%.
Welcome to the unemployment line, Cantor.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association