Eric Cantor to Step Down As House Majority Leader Following Primary Loss, Throwing GOP Leadership Into Chaos

Last night, Eric Cantor became the first House Majority Leader in history to lose a primary vote. Later today, he will announce that he is stepping down from his leadership role as of the end of July, according to The Washington Post's Fix blog. Cantor has been the House majority leader since 2011. 

What happens now? No one knows. Because Cantor's loss to challenger David Brat was so unexpected, there's no clear course.

It's a big scramble, not just to find a replacement majority leader, but to figure out who will step into the role of Speaker of the House when Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) inevitably steps down. Via National Journal:

A senior Republican leadership aide described the mood as "chaos for the leadership ranks."

"We're absolutely stunned. Honestly, we really can't believe it," said the aide, who likened it to the 2004 election defeat of Tom Daschle of South Dakota, who was Senate minority leader at the time.

"Given the speculation Boehner himself may decide not to run again for speaker, the idea had been out there that Cantor would simply walk into the speakership," said the aide. "But now, who the hell would be the next speaker?"—particularly, the aide added, if Paul Ryan doesn't want it, or Rep. Tom Price of Georgia isn't interested.

Two possible successors for Cantor's job are the current Majority Whip, Kevin McCarthy, and Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), according to Politico. There are other potential candidates as well.  

In the bigger picture, what this probably means is that we're not only going to see a move to fill a gap in GOP leadership, but a public struggle to determine the direction and temperament of the Republican party going forward. This won't just be about finding somebody to do the job. It will be about what kind of party the GOP wants to be.

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  • Los Doyers||

    If only Californians would dismount the prog cock and throw one of our senators out of office, preferably Feinstein.

  • Cis Shitlord||

    Why Feinstein? I can't find a single reason to distinguish her from the equally loathsome Boxer.

  • grrizzly||

    Isn't Boxer completely retarded, while Feinstein is rather evil?

  • Cis Shitlord||

    No, they're both completely retarded.

  • Los Doyers||

    I thought the libertarian criteria of "who should be voted out" also correlates with the "who would you rather" game? So in that case, Boxer.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Exactly. Feinstein is evil but competent whereas Boxer might very well be of diminished mental capacity.

    As I am fond of pointing out, she makes Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann sound eloquent.

  • KDN||

    That's Senator Boxer to you, citizen. She worked very hard for that title, and expects you to address her with the proper respect.

  • PapayaSF||

    Feinstein has occasional moments of common sense. Boxer, not so much.

  • cavalier973||

    It's a big scramble, not just to find a replacement majority leader...

    Whoa. The implications of Cantor's loss are more serious than I realized.

  • Cis Shitlord||

    Sarcasm? This is the insiders trying to make it look like DISASTER if the proles dare to go against their chosen few.

  • ||

    There was a hilarious article I read a few weeks back about the campaign to unseat Justin Amash.

    Apparently, Michigan businessmen don't like the fact that they can't call up Justin Amash's office and get him to help them out with a loan guarentee or a regulatory problem they are having. Apparently, Justin Amash is not willing to pull strings for them.

    The horrors! Amash is insufficiantly corrupt for the establishment's taste!

  • Cis Shitlord||

    This is why we need campaign finance reform or something.

  • ||

    Here it is:
    http://www.thetimesherald.com/.....ders-split

    In a west Michigan district where conservativism is often equated with commerce, Amash has alienated some business leaders to the point where they are openly backing his challenger, Brian Ellis, in the Aug. 5 primary.

    They include people connected to concerns many, if not most, Michiganders could identify: The Meijer family, with its string of eponymous stores. Mark Bissell, heir to the self-named vacuum cleaner company. The heads of Steelcase, which sells office furniture around the globe. And executives at Dow Chemical, one of the largest chemical companies in the world.
    ...
    Richard Studley, president and CEO of the Michigan Chamber, said Amash presents a rare case. Amash still could get the endorsement, Studley said, but he acknowledged that Amash has rankled some members by giving the cold shoulder to businesspeople looking for an open door or a welcoming ear on issues he may disagree with them on — as well as by frequently voting against his own party.

    “We have good companies in that district, large and small, who say the congressman is unhelpful or unresponsive,” Studley said. “It is unusual. Ordinarily you would expect an incumbent Republican would have a good or positive relationship with the business community.”

  • R C Dean||

    Richard Studley, president and CEO of the Michigan Chamber,

    Dick Studley? Seriously?

  • PapayaSF||

    Wow, born with a porn name.

  • Ahem'||

    We have a State Farm insurance agent down the street named Dick Tingeloff, true story. Poor guy must have been severely abused in school.

  • Invisible Finger||

    Having done business with all of the mentioned companies (except Dow), I have to say these companies all have a culture of the most incredibly whiny employees I have ever worked with.

    Now I see the culture is bred by the CEO's.

  • Timrekgrun||

    They're giving it to Amash because they believe in the Libertarian Moment. Amirite?

  • Bardas Phocas||

    House Majority Leader, hmmm. That position is decided with knife fights right?

  • Zombie Jimbo||

    Nope, they use the government game:

    Rock, indictment, scissors, snake, Kennedy.

    Scissors cut indictment
    Indictment covers rock
    Rock crushes snake
    Snake poisons Kennedy
    Kennedy smashes scissors
    Scissors decapitate snake
    SNake eats indictment
    Indictment jails Kennedy
    Kennedy melts rock in Scotch
    Rock crushes scissors

  • Zombie Jimbo||

    Snake symbol is a crooked finger, and Kennedy, of course, is a fat loose fist.

  • PapayaSF||

    I thought it would be an erect middle finger.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    Shouldn't the Kennedy symbol be a flaccid penis?

  • PapayaSF||

    That would slow the game down too much.

  • db||

    Maybe I'm thinking.of the wrong Kennedy.

  • Ahem'||

    Is it the Kennedy that gives swimming lessons?
    First you get out of the car, then you float to the top.

  • ||

    It will be about what kind of party the GOP wants to be.

    I'm putting my money on grand and old.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    "Given the speculation Boehner himself may decide not to run again for speaker, the idea had been out there that Cantor would simply walk into the speakership," said the aide.

    I believe he still can.

  • ||

    Exactly. IIRC, one need not be a member of Congress to be elected Speaker.

  • Juice||

    Well well well. That would be quite amusing and interesting if it happened.

  • MWG||

    Juicy Ham Tearz?

  • ||

    Anti-semitic!

  • SweatingGin||

    Still remember that wonderful feeling when Daschle lost. Damn, that was great. And just weeks after the Assault Weapons Ban expired. Pretty sure that was the biggest reason, too.

  • Cis Shitlord||

    Did Boehner win his primary? And if so, why?

  • Ryan60657||

    Thomas Massie please.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    This is a perfect chance to snatch defeat from the jaws of impending victory, Republitardos: PETER KING.

  • Swiss Servator, CH yeah!||

    We support that!

    /Continuity IRA

  • ||

    Awesome.

    Maybe the establishment will finally lose it's grip and be replaced by something else.

    I am not sure I want the Tea Party to mount a takeover of the party leadership, though, since they have been so heavily co-opted by social conservatives.

    Even so-called libertarian David Brat sounds much more like a traditional conservative given his stances on immigration and national defense.

    I do note that he had nothing to say about abortion on his website though.

    Perhaps a new ruling coalition will emerge with libertarians and tea party conservatives having a greater share of power.

    But I doubt that the crony capitalists will release their grip without a fight. It's going to take more than one primary victory to stop the "establishment" from trying to defeat any effort to reign spending or federal power. They like the money and the favors.

  • cavalier973||

  • cavalier973||

    It does not mean that the State alone uses violence, but it does mean that when push comes to shove, the State will win in a battle of wills. If you refuse to pay your taxes, you will lose. You will go to jail, and if you fight, you will lose. The government holds a monopoly on violence. Any law that we vote for is ultimately backed by the full force of our government and military. Do we trust institutions of the government to ensure justice? Is that what history teaches us about the State? Or do we live in particularly lucky and fortunate times where the State can be trusted to do minimal justice? The State’s budget is currently about $3 trillion a year. Do you trust that power to the political Right? Do you trust it to the Left? If you answered “no” to either question, you may have a major problem in the future.

  • paranoid android||

    The State’s budget is currently about $3 trillion a year. Do you trust that power to the political Right? Do you trust it to the Left? If you answered “no” to either question, you may have a major problem in the future.

    I think I like this guy.

  • ||

    I think overall this is a positive either way because Cantor is a symbol of what's wrong with the GOP and politicians in general. Brat may very well turn out to be worse for libertarians, but ultimately we need new faces in DC one way or the other. The faster that revolving door spins, the better as far as I'm concerned.

  • antisocial-ist||

    I feel a disturbance in the force. I think the stupid party is about to do something especially stupid to combat this "dangerous libertarian streak".

  • Drake||

    Time for the GOP to strike back at their voters!

    I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody's part.

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    He looks like the bastard offspring of Sylvester Stallone and Billie Jean King!

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    So far the prog talking points is that Brat is a dangerous anti-government demagogue that doesn't want to actually govern.

    Now what strikes me about complaining about someone's 'inability to govern' is that it basically illustrates what I call the Peter Pan-approach to politics: if we just hope and dream and pray and BELIEVE hard enough in the efficacy of our government it can actually get stuff done.

    People like Brat that recognize any limitations in government are to scorned as not serious or part of the Ayn Randian death cult.

  • Cis Shitlord||

    I thought it was that Republicans hate Jews?

  • Drake||

    They like the Israeli types and hate the New York kind.

  • ||

    My lefty friends are calling him (Brat) outright batshit insance and crazy and a nutjob.

  • ||

    Though I do find the Mann Coulter endorsement odd.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Eh, they make their money hating on Boehner and Cantor and the other establishment types. Who care if it is for the wrong reasons?

    And yeah, they really want to paint him as a libertarian extremist because he said nice things about Ayn Rand and is sympathetic to Austrian ideas.

  • ||

    *insane

  • NoVAHockey||

    based on what. 5 mins on google.

    sorry. 3 mins.

  • ||

    Fact is, they're pants-shitting terrified of less government. Pants. Shitting.

  • NoVAHockey||

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-G.....-Interview

    Pretty good interview with him. uses the phrase "rent seeking"

  • PapayaSF||

    The guy teaches economics (apparently the good kind). I like that.

  • CE||

    I wish that all of our elected representatives didn't want to govern.

  • Juice||

    Yep. If you WANT to govern, you shouldn't be allowed to.

  • R C Dean||

    The only headline that would give me more pleasure than "Throwing [TEAM BE RULED] Leadership Into Chaos" would be "Throwing [TEAM BE RULED] Leadership Into Jail.

  • PapayaSF||

    I support the two-term limit: one term in office, one term in prison.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Too bad Michele Bachmann is retiring.

  • antisocial-ist||

    So far the prog talking points is that Brat is a dangerous anti-government demagogue that doesn't want to actually govern.

    You mean, he wants to leave people alone? That bastard!

  • ||

  • PapayaSF||

    Funny that the USA managed to do OK for the first 130 years or so, under policies that make today's "radical Republicans" look like college Marxists in comparison.

  • 110 Lean||

    Eric Cantor to Step Down As House Majority Leader Following Primary Loss, Throwing GOP Leadership Into Chaos

    Chaos? Really? Chaos?

  • ||

    It's a typo.

    It's supposed to be "Throwing GOP Leadership Into Kaos"

  • Pro Libertate||

    I demand the Cones of Silence, Chief.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    It's supposed to be "Throwing GOP Leadership Into Tartarus".

  • Lady Bertrum||

    This is the GOP's response to Brat:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JsdmcPEEFs

  • ||

    (I looooove that whole scene in that movie)

  • Lady Bertrum||

    Let's get some fuckin french toast!

  • ||

    *covered in vomit*

    I think I'm gonna pass on the sex, if that's OK.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    A vertical cellphone video of a youtube video? Derpception.

  • ace_m82||

    "Eric Cantor to Step Down As House Majority Leader Following Primary Loss, Throwing GOP Leadership Into Chaos"

    Mwahaaahahaha!

    (I'm sorry if that isn't an actual comment but it was the first thing that came to mind when I read that title.)

  • Tonio||

    I don't know if this has been mentioned anywhere here, but Virginia is an open-primary state so any registered voter can vote in any primary. Virginia voters do not register by party affiliation so there is no way to implement closed primaries without requiring voters to re-register. The only way to keep interlopers out of the process if to nominate candidates via caucuses.

  • PapayaSF||

    Hmmm. So how much of this was Democrats wanting to off a sitting Republican?

  • CE||

    GOP leadership was already in chaos.

  • jmomls||

    Paul Ryan is done as a politician with national ambitions if he does NOT seek the Speakership.

  • Pulseguy||

    I'm not convinced his win was not spurred by a large group of Dems who are going around voting in Republican primaries and unseating Republicans in favor of Tea Party members.

    I think they will regret it should they accomplish what they want to do, as Hillary will face a Republican Senate and House. (Yeah, I know, I'm assuming Hillary wins. I hate it too. But, it is most reasonable right now to think this.)

  • harleyrider1778||

    That will teach the RINOS....................

  • harleyrider1778||

    THAT SHOULD SEND A CLEAR MESSAGE TO THE RINO'S

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