Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. How Likely Is an Eric Cantor Write-In Campaign?

 

130424_eric_cantor_ap_605Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the second-ranking House Republican, lost to Tea Party candidate David Brat by a stunning 11 points. National Democrats are now hoping Cantor will run as a write-in candidate in the general election, which, according to the Wall Street Journal, is allowed under state law, as long as he doesn’t run as an independent.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi said the American people should take notice because the Tea Party victory has pulled the Republican Party further to the “radical right.” The truth is, of course, that the Tea Party isn’t radical at all with its emphasis on limited government (I know, truly extreme stuff). Pelosi and her ilk are the ones who have pulled the Democratic Party to the radical left, especially with its maniacal devotion to amnesty—and establishment Republicans haven’t done enough to stop them. Virginians in District 7 have sent a clear message that they’ve had enough.

Now, Pelosi smells blood in the water. “As far as the midterm elections are concerned,” she said, “it’s a whole new ballgame.” 

No doubt they’re hoping for a Democratic win with candidate Jack Trammell, a professor at Randolph-Macon College—the same college where Brat is an economics professor. The problem is that Virginia’s 7th District is heavily Republican, but Democrats see a crack in the armor if Cantor puts his name on the ballot and splits the Republican vote. He probably won’t do it—or at least that’s what’s being said in the press—but it’s still an option if establishment Republicans want to see Cantor back in the House, despite his trouncing in the primary by those meddling Tea Party kids.

According to Roll Call, local Republicans telegraphed that a Cantor write-in candidacy is “unlikely,” (that doesn’t sound very definitive), but the possibility is being mentioned throughout the media. After all, it worked for Sen. Lisa Murkowski in 2010 when she lost the Republican primary in Alaska. Why not try it for the second most powerful Republican in the House? Well, make that past tense.

Cantor said Tuesday night, “I believe there’s opportunity around the next corner for all of us. So I look forward to continuing to fight with all of you for the things that we believe in for the conservative cause, because those solutions of ours are the answer to the problems that so many people are facing today.”

Will “continuing the fight” involve a write-in candidacy? Or will the GOP do what Jeff Ryer, communications director at the state Senate Republican Caucus, said: “Everybody will line up behind David Brat right away”? Virginia Republican Party Chairman Pat Mullins made a similar vow when he said to Brat after he finished his victory speech, “Anything you need, you call me and we’ll get it.” 

Will the commitment to line up behind David Brat start with sending a clear message to Cantor that he needs to stay out of the race? For the sake of unity—and a guaranteed Republican victory in November—let’s hope so.

There are 15 comments.

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  1. Ward Inactive

    I’m just a resident of the 7th district and while I’ve met Eric Cantor I do not really know him at all. I think his real problem was a failure to inspire loyalty or a following of any sort. Given that fact, I think attempting to become a write in candidate would compound his error.

    • #1
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:01 AM PDT
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  2. Pilli Inactive

    If Cantor is the good man he believes himself to be, he will publicly and fully endorse David Brat today or tomorrow (Friday at the latest.) Anything less and he is a sore loser and does not believe in the process that made him so powerful in the first place.

    • #2
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:01 AM PDT
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  3. Done Contributor

    Thankfully, the answer appears to be no.

    • #3
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:05 AM PDT
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  4. Seawriter Contributor

    Well, it is the Washington Post (You know how reliable they are), but in an article that ran there Cantor announced he will not conduct a write in campaign. (Fifth paragraph.)

    Seawriter

    • #4
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:09 AM PDT
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  5. Paul Dougherty Member

    Now we will see the beautiful transformation from “the special interests” that Eric Cantor was beholding to, now becoming the “supporters” for candidate Brat (if he plays his cards right).

    • #5
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:41 AM PDT
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  6. Manny Member

    Now, Pelosi smells blood in the water. “As far as the midterm elections are concerned,” she said, “it’s a whole new ballgame.”

    Pelosi might say it’s a whole new ballgame, but that doesn’t make it so. If anything this shows how energized the Republican grass roots are. I think the Cantor defeat points to an even greater Republican victory come November. But it depends on unity on our side. Our factions in the end must come together.

    • #6
    • June 11, 2014, at 11:59 AM PDT
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  7. D.C. McAllister Inactive
    D.C. McAllister

    Yep, I wrote this before he made any official announcement. Nice to see him do the right thing. Let’s hope the GOP gives Bratthe support he needs.

    • #7
    • June 11, 2014, at 12:42 PM PDT
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  8. billy Inactive

    D.C. McAllister:

    Yep, I wrote this before he made any official announcement. Nice to see him do the right thing. Let’s hope the GOP gives Bratthe support he needs.

     That is sure to happen. The Establishment always takes defeat graciously.

    • #8
    • June 11, 2014, at 1:18 PM PDT
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  9. Stad Thatcher

    D.C. McAllister:

    Yep, I wrote this before he made any official announcement. Nice to see him do the right thing. Let’s hope the GOP gives Brat the support he needs.

     I made a post on the Editor’s Desk post about who would replace Cantor as the majority leader. If the Republican establishment doesn’t back Brat and other tea-party candidates in the general election, I think it could be a bloodbath for the Republicans in 2016 as conservative voters stay home in droves . . .

    • #9
    • June 11, 2014, at 1:37 PM PDT
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  10. Blondie Thatcher

    Stad:

    D.C. McAllister:

    Yep, I wrote this before he made any official announcement. Nice to see him do the right thing. Let’s hope the GOP gives Brat the support he needs.

    I made a post on the Editor’s Desk post about who would replace Cantor as the majority leader. If the Republican establishment doesn’t back Brat and other tea-party candidates in the general election, I think it could be a bloodbath for the Republicans in 2016 as conservative voters stay home in droves . . .

     I’ll second that sentiment. Funny how you always hear about the “Tea Party” staying at home and not about the lack of support the non-establishment candidates receive.

    • #10
    • June 11, 2014, at 4:43 PM PDT
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  11. Peabody Here Member

    Yesterday afternoon I was standing on line to board a flight from Raleigh to Baltimore. In front of me were 3 unabashedly liberal (is there any other kind?) ladies. One of them began mockingly saying she felt sorry for poor Eric Cantor. That got the other two going. “Have you heard the stuff coming out of Brat’s mouth?” “He is crazy!” “It serves the Republicans right for the redistricting they’ve done.” “Brat is toast in November.”

    I felt my temper starting to rise so I quickly put on my headphones and tuned them out. I knew I wanted to push back but I didn’t know enough about Brat or Virginia politics to wade into the argument. The little I heard Brat speaking on TV, I did notice he invoked God quite a bit…which is enough to scare most liberals. But, regardless. If Cantor had won, that trio would probably be saying how scary and crazy he is.

    • #11
    • June 12, 2014, at 4:45 AM PDT
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  12. James Of England Moderator
    James Of England Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Blondie:

    Stad:

    D.C. McAllister:

    Yep, I wrote this before he made any official announcement. Nice to see him do the right thing. Let’s hope the GOP gives Brat the support he needs.

    I made a post on the Editor’s Desk post about who would replace Cantor as the majority leader. If the Republican establishment doesn’t back Brat and other tea-party candidates in the general election, I think it could be a bloodbath for the Republicans in 2016 as conservative voters stay home in droves . . .

    I’ll second that sentiment. Funny how you always hear about the “Tea Party” staying at home and not about the lack of support the non-establishment candidates receive.

     Do either of you have any particular examples in mind? I can’t think of a Tea Party win so far this year that hasn’t had establishment support in the primary. When McDaniels wins he’ll be the first, but his seat is entirely safe. Gillespie’s effort means that there’ll be a substantial GOTV operation in Brat’s district. 

    • #12
    • June 12, 2014, at 5:39 PM PDT
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  13. Blondie Thatcher

    James Of England:

    Blondie:

    Stad:

    If the Republican establishment doesn’t back Brat and other tea-party candidates in the general election, I think it could be a bloodbath for the Republicans in 2016 as conservative voters stay home in droves . . .

    Funny how you always hear about the “Tea Party” staying at home and not about the lack of support the non-establishment candidates receive.

    Do either of you have any particular examples in mind? I can’t think of a Tea Party win so far this year that hasn’t had establishment support in the primary. When McDaniels wins he’ll be the first, but his seat is entirely safe. Gillespie’s effort means that there’ll be a substantial GOTV operation in Brat’s district.

     The examples I’m thinking of include those from in 2010 when the “establishment” candidate lost in the primary (mostly Senate races) and the “powers that be” sounded as bad as the dems. They also didn’t lend a hand in the Va. Governor’s race that gave them McAuliffe. I know there was a lot more going on there (I have family in the state) but lack of support was obvious.

    • #13
    • June 12, 2014, at 5:54 PM PDT
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  14. James Of England Moderator
    James Of England Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Blondie: The examples I’m thinking of include those from in 2010 when the “establishment” candidate lost in the primary (mostly Senate races) and the “powers that be” sounded as bad as the dems. They also didn’t lend a hand in the Va. Governor’s race that gave them McAuliffe. I know there was a lot more going on there (I have family in the state) but lack of support was obvious.

     Could you be more specific about the 2010 elections? Rubio, McMahon, O’Donnell, Angle, Paul, Ayotte, Moran, Johnson, and Toomey, all got considerable establishment support after the primaries, and most of them during the primaries. I don’t recall if Buck did, but overall there was a problem of some establishment figures criticizing Tea Party figures, but not of them keeping their checkbooks closed or not voting.
    The only State where I recall that there was a strong anti- Tea establishment effort after the primaries was in Alaska, and I think that was more about Joe Miller as a person than about party factions; it’s not easy to lose to a write in with a hard to spell name. 

    • #14
    • June 12, 2014, at 7:10 PM PDT
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  15. Larry3435 Member

    A write-in effort would be insane. Political suicide, and to no purpose. Even if he won, he would have no leadership position anymore. Cantor has no reason to aspire to the status of back-bencher in the House. He’s going to be a good soldier, support the Party’s candidate, and run for Governor next time out.

    • #15
    • June 15, 2014, at 6:33 PM PDT
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