As CNN reports:
Rep. Eric Cantor is expected to relinquish his leadership position as the No. 2 House Republican after losing his Virginia primary in a stunning upset, a senior GOP source tells CNN's Dana Bash.
Cantor is expected to step aside as majority leader on July 31. The decision sets up a leadership scramble among Republicans in the House, which is led by Speaker John Boehner of Ohio.
Original post follows:
The fallout from one of the biggest Primary upsets in modern political history continues, as the Associated Press reports:
On the morning after his loss to David Brat, an economics professor supported by the tea party, there was quiet pressure on Cantor to step down from his post as the Republicans' second-ranking leader. He gave no public signal that he was considering doing so, although a meeting of the rank and file was set for late afternoon.
Others did not wait for him to make his intentions known.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, who serves as the party whip, was informing fellow Republicans he intended to run to succeed Cantor, officials said, and Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas also signaled an interest.
Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., was hoping to replace McCarthy in his current spot, officials said.
In less than 24 hours, Eric Cantor has gone from being one of the most powerful Republicans in Congress to being quietly asked to step aside after his Tuesday Primary loss. Whether or not Cantor holds on to his official title as House Majority Leader, his power is effectively gone, but it will be interesting to see how this unexpected internal leadership struggle affects other Republicans around the country — and here in Colorado. Cantor has been a big supporter of Rep. Cory Gardner, and Gardner was no doubt counting on Cantor to help him raise money in his bid for the U.S. Senate. As New York Magazine reported in 2011:
“He was always calling with advice,” says Cory Gardner, a freshman from Colorado. “I oftentimes wondered, now, surely he can’t call everybody because how much time does he have? But then I got to Congress, and I discovered that he was calling everybody.”
Even more important than advice was money. Cantor is one of the GOP’s most prolific fund-raisers—hoovering up dollars not only in Richmond, but in the Jewish precincts of Los Angeles and Miami as well as in New York, where hedge-funders and private-equity types appreciate his efforts to preserve the “carried interest” income-tax break. He is comfortable monetizing an extraordinarily wide swath of his life. [Pols emphasis]
Will Gardner find the same level of support from someone like Rep. Kevin McCarthy or Rep. Pete Sessions? Gardner's ability to raise money will be impacted to some degree here, but it's still too early to tell how much it will hurt.