Eric Cantor

Cantor District Dem Candidate's Sorry Excuse for a Website Offers Lesson on the Two-Party System


Trammell for Congress

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor lost his Republican primary in historically unprecedented fashion yesterday, and now David Brat, who defeated him, looks set to coast into victory in November. Virginia's 7th congressional district, after all, is heavily Republican. Cantor first won the seat in 2000, with 67 percent of the vote, and with 58 percent of the vote in 2012, the first election after the most recent redrawing of Virginia's congressional districts. It's not an insurmountable advantage for a non-Republican, unlike truly single-party districts, but it's also not one Jack Trammell, the Democrats' candidate (who, like Brat, is a professor at the local Randolph-Macon College) seems equipped to surmount.

As evidence, take a look at Trammell's sorry excuse for a website, which doesn't include so much as a talking point-laden issues page. There's probably been more interest in the 2014 race in the 7th congressional district, and in Trammell, today alone than there's been to-date. Yet nobody in the Democrats' nationwide apparatus though to give Trammell's website a crack makeover last night in anticipation of the new attention.

Democrats appear to have written off the district in a similar way to Cantor; they've assumed the result. It's typical of the two-party duopoly, which has carved out most of the country between it, leaving just a handful of "battleground" districts and states over which the two parties compete.

In that context, efforts by the Virginia Libertarian Party to compete across the state appear to be paying off. For the first time in its history the party will be fielding a candidate for eleven out of the twelve federal offices up for election in November (only the 5th congressional district doesn't have a candidate), led by the former gubernatorial candidate Rob Sarvis running for Senate. In the 7th district, the candidate is James Carr, whose website suggests Libertarians are taking that race more seriously than Democrats.

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  1. It’s always the two party system’s fault, isn’t it, Krayewski? Maybe we don’t need more choices. Maybe all we need is a candidate who is all things to all people. Did you ever think of that?

    1. You know who else was all things to all people?

        1. I think that’s all people are all things to Warty.

          1. I think that’s all people are all playthings to Warty.


        1. Good one. I watched that when it was first broadcast and had nightmares for a week.

          1. Holy crap. How old are you?

      1. Ibram Gaunt?

        1. I donno, I couldn’t even get far enough into the first book for him to be introduced.

  2. Everyone knows that having a poorly designed website, or one that constantly has problems functioning properly (*cough cough*), is a sign of someone who likes to have intercourse with barnyard animals.

  3. This post is stupid even for Ed. The majority leader and Speaker of the House in waiting just lost his primary and most likely his seat. The bitch about the two party system is that incumbents never lose and are just replaced by a slightly different brand when they lose.

    That complaint certainly has its merits. But the case of Cantor, where a hugely powerful incumbent just lost his seat to a upstart primary challenger who is loathed by the party establishment is not an example to use to show how the two party system fails. Cantor’s losing shows how the two party system sometimes can work in spite of itself.

    1. What? I didn’t say Cantor losing is an example of the failed two-party system. I said Tremmell’s website is. It’s in the headline. The ability of some readers to glean whatever bias they assume ought to be in a given piece of text always astounds me.

      1. S N A P!

      2. Since Cantor already lost, what does the website show? If your argument is that the two party system fails because parties sometimes have loser candidates, especially in districts where their prospects are not very good, then it is even dumber than I thought it was.

        Seriously, Ed, why does the Dem being a loser matter if not to show that the two party system doesn’t give choices? That is a nice point and all, except that in this case they managed to give people choices in the primary.

        1. Because a party that raises millions of dollars, has an untold number of staffers at all levels devoted solely to the electoral process did not have the resources or forethought to react in real time to Cantor’s loss by doing something as simple as updating the opponent’s website. It shows just how comfortable, and vulnerable, the two parties have become.

          1. Comfortable?! Vulnerable?! No, it just shows they’re not stupid, and are focused on getting as much power & influence for their members as possible, not on propaganda. Why should they spend any effort or money on publicizing someone who can’t win, and could therefore only hurt them nationally by associating their ideas with losers? Weak default candidates are a danger to a major party’s reput’n.

  4. The more I read about Brat, the more I like him.….._sham.html

    David Brat, the obscure college professor and Tea Party favorite who unseated House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in last night’s giant election shocker, thinks mainstream economics is a bit of a lie. This might seem odd, given that the man is himself an economist at Randolph-Macon College. But in 2005, he produced a long, apparently unpublished reader on the history and philosophy of economic thought (which Vox turned up last night). It argues, essentially, that the field suffers from a mass delusion of scientific impartiality.
    Where most practitioners will tell you that they try to derive truths about the world by working from data and empirical observations, like natural scientists, Brat says their methods are actually grounded in unexamined moral and philosophical assumptions?especially utilitarianism, which generally holds that our goal should be to do the greatest amount of good for the greatest amount of people.

    1. Utilitarianism, yeah that’s real popular here.

      1. I got from that paragraph that Mr. Brat doesn’t care for utilitarianism.

        1. same. slate is paraphrasing his lament that it’s baked in.

      2. My bad. Sorry.

      3. Eh, I don’t have a problem with ‘. . . our goal should be to do the greatest amount of good for the greatest amount of people.’

        But a huge part of not having a problem with it is actually paying attention to the *real-world* consequences of those polices.

        And, from what I’ve seen the ‘take a lot from a few rich people and giving a little to a lot of poor people, all the while pocketing a chunk of it’ is not as good a policy as ‘leave people alone to get on with things and *everyone* is better off’.

        As a matter of fact, I’d say it actually produces the opposite effect desired – ie produces increased *unhappiness* for the maximum number of people.

    2. I’m not sure why Libertarians on this sight (c.f. AM Links commentary) are embracing Brat. Wasn’t his ENTIRE victory based on a campaign slogan along the lines of “Vote for Me, because Cantor is for Immigration Amnesty”?

      At least that’s what I am reading everywhere. Maybe I’m wrong.

      But if that is true, we should be pretty concerned. It basically says that the protectionist, anti-immigration wing, has more or less taken over the Tea Party. Perhaps Brat talks a good talk vis-a-vis liberty, but this being his defining promise does not bode well for when he gets in office.

      1. “site” maybe?

        Also, open borders is as divisive an issue for people here as is, well, you know…


          1. Don’t say what? Deep dish?

      2. Amnesty was part of it but it wasn’t all of it. Brat is much more in line with Libertarianism on everything but immigration.

        Whether you embrace him or not depends on whether you are a single issue immigration voter. A good number of people on this board are that and thus don’t and won’t embrace him. If you are not, there are good reasons to like him.

      3. Maybe some of are taking the time to read is actual writings.

      4. Ron Paul had basically the same take on immigration, as have most of the politically effective libertarians. That’s not to say that it’s the “correct” viewpoint, but it isn’t exactly unheard of to pair libertarian politics with a strong attachment to citizenship and/or mild nativism, at least in this country and the UK.

      5. from what I’m seeing, an economics professor decrying rent seeking and cronyism. that’s a voice we need more of

      6. He was on the radio when I was driving home, and he specifically downplayed immigration, and talked about cronyism & Cantor being out of touch.

        Maybe you should look at the places you’re reading and see if they might have an ulterior motive.

      7. Cantor is an establishment statist scumbag. Drug warrior, friend of big business, hater of liberty, basically everything that is wrong with the Republican party. And he was arrogant enough to take the primary for granted, assuming that his seat was his property. I don’t care who beat him, I’m just glad that someone did.

        1. It is just a bonus that someone much better (seeming) beat him.

  5. Jack and the Dems just need to keep calling him a Randian. It’s effective.

    1. I’ve scrolled past that several times, and every time I do I read “Jack and Diane”.

  6. I’m confused. Cantor, one of the big cheeses in the R party, loses to a Tea Party-aligned free-market economist with strong libertarian leanings. But the big story is that the 2-party system is unchanging and that the Virginia Ls might get an extra .1% this time around? WTF?

    1. The confusion is the result of Ed being a fucking half wit who was desperate to post something for the day.

      1. “the result of Ed being a fucking half wit”

        You really have jettisoned your manners again, haven’t you? Would it kill you to say, instead, something like “The confusion is the result of Ed decrying various faults of the two party system, while using a major shakeup – the knocking off of an established party leader – as his backdrop. This is incorrect”…

      2. Whereas your post reflects your full wit and full desperation to post again and again and again on the same half-baked theme.

  7. From Trammell’s site – TRULY A STIRRING LEADER FOR OUR TIMES!

    Jack was a political science undergraduate, and eventually went on to get advanced degrees or certificates in education, special education, history education, and research methodology. He has been a prolific writer in many diverse areas including two dozen books or book chapters; he was a regular contributor to the Washington Times.

    Jack’s history with the Democratic Party goes back to his days at Grove City College, where he experienced a de facto ban in the school newspaper due to his more moderate views, and he spoke out against various forms of discrimination still evidenced in higher education. He was an active worker on both Clinton campaigns in Kentucky, where he also wrote local position papers and statewide editorials; he also worked for the Dukakis campaign.

    1. well that’s a winner in central VA.

    2. …he also worked for the Dukakis campaign.

      Why would anyone ever admit this?

      1. Confession is good for the soul?

    3. Jack’s history with the Democratic Party goes back to his days at Grove City College, where he experienced a de facto ban in the school newspaper due to his more moderate views

      WTF does this even mean? More moderate than what?

      “Vote for me – I can’t compose a coherent thought.”

      1. I’m guessing more moderate than Grove City College?you know, where Henry Hazlitt taught, and where they wouldn’t take gov’t-funded scholarships.

  8. As evidence, take a look at Trammell’s sorry excuse for a website, which doesn’t include so much as a talking point-laden issues page.

    On the way into work this morning, I heard an ad for the $200 Million Man, Lt. Gov Anthony Brown, who’s running for the full gov. office. It was a talking points nightmare and FREE SHIT bukkake ceremony.

    Evidently he’s going to give everyone 400 acres and 10 mules. I had to pull the car over and throw up, knowing that this shining product of our modern political system will be our next governor.

  9. Yesterday on CSPAN radio a Republican caller complained about the Tea Party in that they were trying to commandeer the two party system. He said they should form their own separate political party and do all the legwork that the other two parties have done and get on ballots “legitimately”. Oh man, I literally laughed out loud behind the wheel.

    1. Is C-SPAN going to add a segregated “TEA party only” caler line? It seems like the “fair” thing to do

  10. I think the Republicans might help this Trammel guy out.

    1. I don’t think they can do much to help the Arizona Diamondbacks….what?

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