House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) will not be-relected this year after losing to Tea Party-backed challenger David Brat in the Republican primary race for Virginia’s 7th congressional district, the Associated Press reported Tuesday night.
Cantor had been expected to defeat Brat, an economics professor at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland. Instead, with 86 percent of precincts reporting, Brat amassed 56 percent of the vote, putting him 12 points ahead of Cantor.
Roll Call reported that Cantor raised more money than Brat by a substantial margin, gathering $5.44 million in his effort to fend off the challenger, who raised $207,000.
But as PBS reported on Monday, Brat undermined Cantor in the eyes of fellow conservatives by criticizing his stated willingness to work with President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party on immigration reform. Brat outpolled Cantor by 40 points among Republicans in the district at a GOP gathering last month.
Brat painted the bipartisan Senate plan that passed last year as a move toward “amnesty,” even after it stalled in the House. Cantor and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) indicated support toward passing new immigration laws using “a step-by-step approach.”
“I’m shocked. I’m just shocked,” former Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA) told Roll Call. “Obviously, it throws leadership into turmoil, it obviously shakes up the party in Virginia.”
Editor’s note, 8:39 p.m.: The story has been corrected to reflect Jack Trammell’s candidacy.
[Image via Fox News]
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
Raw Story is a progressive news site that focuses on stories often ignored in the mainstream media. While giving coverage to the big stories of the day, we also bring our readers' attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories that get ignored in an infotainment culture driven solely by pageviews.
Founded in 2004, Raw Story reaches 9 million unique readers per month and serves more than 30 million pageviews.