Democrats Suggest They Won’t Challenge For Seat After Eric Cantor Refuses Write-In Campaign

The Democratic Party is already signaling that they won’t be solidly backing Jack Trammell, the Democratic candidate for Eric Cantor’s old seat after Cantor announced that he won’t run as a write-in candidate.

Roll Call reported this morning that, “National Democrats are considering competing for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s House seat in the unlikely case the Virginia Republican runs as a write-in candidate in November.” That report meant that the Democratic Party wasn’t planning on getting solidly behind their nominee in the 7th district, Jack Trammell. Those plans became definite when Cantor told his staff in a closed door meeting today that, “I am not going to do a write-in. I am a Republican and proud of that.”


Another sign that the party was not planning to go full throttle behind Trammell is that the DNC immediately began raising money off of Cantor’s defeat, but not for the Virginia race. Strategically, the Democratic Party’s decision makes sense. Cantor’s district is solidly red. 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.

Even though Democrats have won Virginia twice in a row at the presidential level, Cantor’s soon to be old district is a different story. Democrats in heavily red districts face the same lack of support for the national party that Trammell is facing. The Democratic strategy for last few House cycles has been to give Democrats is solid red districts a hearty pat on the back, well wishes, but no precious party campaign dollars.


Hopefully, activists and outside groups pick up the slack and do what the party organization is showing little interest in doing. The odds are long in the effort to turn Eric Cantor’s old seat blue, but Democrats activists on the left should lend their support and try to make it happen.

40 Replies to “Democrats Suggest They Won’t Challenge For Seat After Eric Cantor Refuses Write-In Campaign”

  1. The ouster of Cantor by Brat is enough to make Republicans feel chill through their spines, they wouldn’t try to cross with Brat.

  2. TRoN33 – I think you’re overestimated Brat’s impact. He has very little political experience and was elected in a primary in which just 65,000 people voted. Barely anyone in central Virginia where I live knows who he is, and he’s a virtual unknown to House Republicans. Cantor had that power because he had been in the House for 14 years, and it takes time to develop those connections. He lost in large part because he was more interested in developing his national power base than in representing his district.

  3. Brat wouldn’t be, “the most powerful tea party Republican in the House”. He would be just another freshman, you don’t inherit the outgoing congressman’s seniority.

  4. The DNC gives up too easily in ‘red’ districts. Mark Warner(D) won the district 60%-39% in his 2008 Senate race. The Dem who opposed Cantor in 2012 got 41% of the vote, showing a possible trend worth supporting.

  5. Brat’s a Peewee little leaguer compared to Cantor. Smart move to trade down from your MLB star pitcher (in bringing home the bacon, so to speak) Virginians.

  6. I guess I understand the strategy, but it sure makes us Democrats in red districts feel abandoned. A lot of us respond by not sending money to the DNC, but to individual candidates instead.

  7. They need to back all Dem candidates in all races. They are complaining we don’t show up to vote on off years. We can’t vote for a candidate that isn’t there. Come on guys there’s a chance to take on this nut case.

  8. Don’t be too sure, Jason. It will be interesting to see the breakdown of this election’s numbers. How many votes were cast compared to previous primaries? Cantor was defeated in an open primary where anyone can vote. Plenty of people voted for abc (anyone but cantor). Many of those who voted in the primary will not support Bratt under any circumstances. By the end of August when Bratt’s utterances get closer scrutiny, polls may show a growing distaste for what the republicans are offering and the $$$ will start showing up as the possibility of taking the seat from an extremist looks better and better.
    I hope!

  9. Just got an email from the DNC trying to raise money off of Cantors defeat. This was my reply

    No I will not donate as a life long Democrat I find it electoral malpractice that you will not support Jack Trammel. How do you know he doesn’t have a chance? Your info has come from the same consultants who have been proven wrong time and again. Furthermore you are just like the baggers to try to raise money off of disgust with republican politics but wont put that money to use so we at least have a shot of winning the house.


  10. This is why the DNC, the DSCC and the DCCC get NO money from me.

    They do however, get their mailers back with a note each time.

  11. Let’s hope so. In the meantime I think it’s a mistake for the national Dems to make any kind of concession about any district. It takes hard work but that’s what political organizations are supposed to do: work hard to get candidates elected. I know that if I lived there I’d work hard to defeat the teabagger candidate. We do not need any more of them in Congress!

  12. That’s the problem with Dems – no backbone to take it to where we need to fight – I’ll be sending Mr. Jack Trammel what little I have to spare to help him with his election. If the big money in the DNC don’t want to help the little guy, I say all the little guys should help him directly.

  13. ummmmm just look at the other freshman teapublicans. They didn’t care that they were freshmen. They all came out swinging. The DNC needs to back their candidate.

  14. For Christ’s sake Dems !! At least challenge this idiot Tea Party scum. So what if it’s a deep red district?


  15. Eric Cantor spent millions of dollars to win while the winner spent 200,000. It will do no good to pour advertising money into the election. You will never change the vote from these hard core republicans no matter how bad their candidate is. However, since this is a midterm election if money is spent contacting the democrats asking them to get off their keisters and vote we could steal this seat. Every registered democrat in that election needs to be mailed a letter asking them to vote. Then each one needs contacted twice by phone. Once to acknowledge receipt of the letter and again a day or two before election to again ask them to vote.

  16. Democrats shouldn’t be conceding any elections to Republican red districts. Republicans and their Tea Party wing are in a civil war. No one predicted Cantor would loose the election. Put viable Democrats in these districts and Support them.

    People Focus ~ Vote Nov. 4, 2014 in Full Force! KO Congress extreme Republicans in midterm elections #ShutdownGOP in all elections Congress, Governors, Mayors…

  17. The campaign slogans write themselves! “Spoiled Brat”! “Don’t send an unTrammelled Brat to Wahington!” “Enough Brats in Congress!” “Government is for Grownups, not Brats!” I mean, damn, those slogans write themselves more easily than Chef Boyardee jokes after hurricanes.

  18. Yeah, I got the same email, I didn’t donate because the money wasn’t going to Trammell.

    I already get tons of emails and I do donate when I can, but if I donated even 3 to $5.00 every time I got an email I would be broke.

  19. I constantly receive requests for donations from the DNC, DCCC, the DSCC and on and on and on. If they’re not going to help Trammel, then I will send my donation directly to his campaign instead. David Brat is a dangerous man and has no business in Congress. He will only do harm, because that’s what the Tea Party is all about.

  20. I constantly receive requests for donations from the DNC, DCCC, the DSCC and on and on and on. If they’re not going to help Trammel, then I will send my donation directly to his campaign instead. David Brat is a dangerous man and has no business in Congress. He will only do harm, because that’s what the Tea Party is all about.

  21. The DNC should be pouring money into this campaign…..everyone seems to be overlooking the symbolism of this race….a Tea Party Libertarian Economics Professor against a Liberal Democrat Socialogy Professor from the same college….the symbolism is gigantic … the battle here is the same as is being fought all over this country

  22. If we don’t get behind our guy, Trammel, then how in the hell do we ever turn a district? We are just going to let someone even worse than idiot Cantor rise to power? The DNC needs to rethink this move.

  23. I don’t want any dem to despair about the decision made by national dems about Trammell. They have much to learn. They don’t seem to understand that it is us who will make the decision to assist Trammell. We can donate to him and help GOTV. If we want VA CD-7 to go into the democratic win column in Nov., we can make it happen.

  24. @CaseyMarion ~ Yep. Just as long as you bring home the superior bacon to your corporate benefactors, making them Federal beneficiaries exclusively. Those who aren’t corporate benefactors need to return to the equivalent of yesterday’s cotton fields a.s.a.p. – just where we were born to do and where we belong.

    Handouts are exclusively for the wealthy and well-connected.

  25. The DNC is worthless – unless you want to donate every dollar you have so they can live lavishly and sit on their keisters and do nothing, that is.

    Better to just donate directly to a candidate. Although Trammel is pretty much a conserva-Dem, he’s the best we can get for Cantor’s ex-district.

  26. Damn DCCC and the DNC are this stupid not to challenge this seat. They said to unseat the favorite you have to have a live boy or a dead girl in your closet. We don’t need that. All we have to do is use his own word

    Brat Attack

    The more we find out about David Brat, the man who dethroned House GOP majority leader Eric Cantor, the more it becomes clear the Tea Party inmates have taken over the GOP asylum.

    A quick review of his public statements reveals a fellow who is about as tea party as can be. He appears to endorse slashing Social Security payouts to seniors by two-thirds. He wants to dissolve the IRS. And he has called for drastic cuts to education funding, explaining, “My hero Socrates trained in Plato on a rock. How much did that cost? So the greatest minds in history became the greatest minds in history without spending a lot of money.”
    Read More

  27. I went directly to Jack Trammell’s website and donated $25 a month for the next five months. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but if Dems can get behind him individually, it will add up.
    You don’t need to live in the district or even the state to do so.

  28. Sorry.
    As I sent my max of $25 to Jack Trammell already, I sincerely hope that the Dems maintain the No-Money-For-Jack-Trammell posture, and then later when those idiotic Wasserman Dems realize Jack might win, that Jack says “Stuff it up your Wall Street Bankers’ arse, where it came from”.
    By NOT getting Dem money, Jack maintains a historic independence in a historic race, which will bear well with a lot of Virginia voters from the fighting 7th.
    This would be about two populists wanting to represent the best for Virginia.
    Let’s keep it that way.

  29. Great idea.
    But please reply to those fundraising letters with this info….as I have done.
    WE the people will elect Jack Trammell.
    Stay, the phuque, away !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.