Tuesday night, June 10th, 2014 residents of Virginia’s 7th district made history by voting out Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in the GOP primary election.
Cantor, a career politician and neo-conservative was ousted in favor of newcomer David Brat, a local university economics professor. Brat is being hailed as a “tea party” candidate, and while his views seem to align well with those generally held by tea party affiliates he actually received no backing from the major tea party organizations, due to the evidently misled belief that Cantor was untouchable.
Brat’s win truly is a history making event, and one that sends a shock wave through the GOP establishment. Late night’s victory marks the first time in US history that a House Majority Leader has been unseated in a primary election. The implications of this win are far reaching. Cantor has been a vocal supporter of amnesty measures for so-called illegal immigrants – an issue that has been coming to a head recently with immigrant children currently flooding over the US-Mexico border as an unforeseen ramification of President Obama’s recent declaration that children would not be deported. Mr. Brat was able to use this to his full advantage to rally the voters in Virginia’s heavily Republican district 7. This blowback against amnesty will have an effect on the GOP’s 2016 presidential field, particularly on pro-amnesty candidates like Jeb Bush, should he run. Brat ran on a platform promoting a return to Judeo-Christian values, strong national defense, secure borders and constitutional government – a message which seems to have resonated with voters who felt abandoned by Eric Cantor.
I was unaware of this race, or David Brat until news of his monumental victory broke last night. Upon reading up on him, I have to say I’m impressed and cautiously optimistic that Mr. Brat will become a great addition to the small cohort of liberty politicians in Washington D.C.. Based upon his website Mr. Brat appears to be a philosophical follower of Ron Paul, supporting a full audit of the Federal Reserve, as well a strong statements in support of the 2nd, 4th, and 10th amendments. I read that Mr. Brat’s campaign manager worked on both of Ron Paul’s campaigns and is a follower of the Austrian economics tradition. Mr. Brat is an economics professor, and while I think it’s likely that he leans in an Austrian direction, I was unable to find any documentation of his particular economic beliefs.
Virginia’s district 7 is a Republican stronghold, so odds are we will be seeing Mr. Brat heading to Washington in November. Many congratulations on a historic victory!
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