House majority leader Eric Cantor's days in Congress are now numbered. The second most senior Republican in the House was defeated by David Brat, a college professor and relatively unknown Tea Party candidate, in Tuesday's primary by 36,000 votes. Cantor, who has served in Congress since 2001, raised more than $5.4 million in the primary versus Brat's $206,000 campaign donations; Cantor spent close to $1 million on fliers and election advertising.
Cantor's loss has sent shock waves through the Republican establishment, especially since Cantor was seen as a likely successor to House Speaker John Boehner. Brat's victory shows that the Tea Party can still win over voters even though party candidates in other national primaries this year have failed to oust GOP incumbents.
Brat accused Cantor of supporting "amnesty" for illegal immigrants, a charge Cantor has denied. Cantor--once considered a Republican "young gun" and future face of the party--has drawn the GOP rightward during his seven congressional terms, taking a more conservative stance on economic and domestic policy issues than some establishment Republicans. The Virginia congressman opposed President Obama's stimulus bill in 2009 and the so-called "grand bargain" that raised the federal debt ceiling in 2011.
Cantor's defeat was "a vote for gridlock," says Yahoo Finance's Jeff Macke in the video above. "The GOP has to be terrified ... there will be no sudden movements. This is gridlock forever."
President Obama circumvented Congress last month when the White House rolled out new emissions standards for the nation's power plants, a move Beltway insiders said was a direct response to congressional bottleneck.
Follow The Daily Ticker on Facebook and Twitter (@DailyTicker)!
More from The Daily Ticker