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Eric Cantor

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Eric Cantor

Eric Cantor
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 7th district
In office
January 3, 2001 – August 18, 2014
Preceded by Thomas Bliley
Succeeded by Dave Brat
House Majority Leader
In office
January 3, 2011 – August 1, 2014
Deputy Kevin McCarthy
Preceded by Steny Hoyer
Succeeded by Kevin McCarthy
House Minority Whip
In office
January 3, 2009 – January 3, 2011
Leader John Boehner
Preceded by Roy Blunt
Succeeded by Steny Hoyer
House Republican Chief Deputy Whip
In office
January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2009
Leader Tom DeLay
Roy Blunt (Acting)
John Boehner
Preceded by Roy Blunt
Succeeded by Kevin McCarthy
Member of the Virginia House of Delegates
from the 73rd district
In office
January 8, 1992 – January 3, 2001
Preceded by Walter Stosch
Succeeded by John O'Bannon
Personal details
Born Eric Ivan Cantor
(1963-06-06) June 6, 1963
Richmond, Virginia, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Diana Fine
Children Evan
Jenna
Michael
Alma mater George Washington University
William & Mary Law School
Columbia University
Religion Judaism

Eric Ivan Cantor (born June 6, 1963) is an American politician, lawyer, and businessman, who served as the United States representative for Virginia's 7th congressional district from 2001 to 2014. A member of the Republican Party, he became House Majority Leader when the 112th Congress convened on January 3, 2011. He previously served as House Minority Whip from 2009 to 2011.

His district included most of the northern and western sections of Richmond, along with most of Richmond's western suburbs and portions of the Shenandoah Valley. Cantor is the highest-ranking Jewish member of Congress in its history, and at the time of his resignation, the only non-Christian Republican in either house.[1][2]

In June 2014, in his bid for re-election, Cantor lost the Republican primary to economics professor Dave Brat in an upset that surprised political analysts. In response Cantor announced his early resignation as House Majority Leader, and several weeks later, he announced his resignation from Congress, which took effect August 18, 2014. Immediately thereafter, Cantor accepted a position as vice chairman of investment bank Moelis & Company at a compensation of $3.4 million.[3] As the US House majority leader, Cantor earned an annual salary of $193,400.[4]

Contents

  • Early life, education, and career 1
  • Virginia House of Delegates 2
  • U.S. House of Representatives 3
    • Committee assignments 3.1
    • Party leadership 3.2
    • Legislation 3.3
  • Political positions 4
    • Social issues 4.1
    • Economy, budgeting, and trade 4.2
    • Other foreign affairs 4.3
  • Political campaigns 5
    • 2014 Republican primary and resignation 5.1
  • Threats and campaign office incident 6
  • Electoral history 7
  • Personal life 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10

Early life, education, and career

Cantor, the second of three children, was born in freshman he worked as an intern for House Republican Tom Bliley of Virginia and was Bliley's driver in the 1982 campaign.[8] Cantor was a member of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity while at GW and received his Bachelor of Arts in 1985.[9] He earned a Juris Doctor degree from William & Mary Law School in 1988, and received a Master of Science in Real Estate Development from Columbia University in 1989.[10]

Cantor worked for over a decade with his father's business doing legal work and real estate development.

Virginia House of Delegates

Cantor served in the

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Thomas Bliley
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 7th congressional district

2001–2014
Succeeded by
Dave Brat
Preceded by
Roy Blunt
House Minority Whip
2009–2011
Succeeded by
Steny Hoyer
Preceded by
Steny Hoyer
House Majority Leader
2011–2014
Succeeded by
Kevin McCarthy
Party political offices
Preceded by
Roy Blunt
House Republican Chief Deputy Whip
2003–2009
Succeeded by
Kevin McCarthy
House Republican Deputy Leader
2009–2011
Preceded by
John Boehner
House Republican Leader
2011–2014
  • Appearances on C-SPAN
  • Interview on BlogTalkRadio, August 2, 2008

Media appearances

External links

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  8. ^ Tom Bliley of Virginia and was Bliley's driver in the 1982 campaign.
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  11. ^ a b "Eric I. Cantor." Marquis Who's Who, 2009. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale, 2008. Document Number: K2013384111. Retrieved December 14, 2008. Fee.
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  41. ^ Cantor, E, Ryan, P, McCarthy, K. Young Guns Threshold Editions, 2010 p. 46.
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  53. ^ Rosenbluth, Susan, "Eric Cantor: He’s Young, He’s Conservative, He’s against Dividing Jerusalem, and John McCain’s Considering Him for VP", Jewish Voice and Opinion, August 2008.
  54. ^ Lewis, Bob, via Associated Press. "In veep search, McCain asks Cantor for records", Yahoo! News, August 3, 2008.
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  60. ^ Memoli, Michael A. Eric Cantor upset: How Dave Brat pulled off a historic political coup, Los Angeles Times, June 11, 2014.
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  76. ^ "2008 Election Results: Pennsylvania to Wyoming". Boston Globe. November 2008. Archived November 9, 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  77. ^ "November 2008 Official Results". "Virginia State Board of Elections". November 2008.
  78. ^ a b
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  82. ^ February 15, 2008 Agreed to by Senate by voice vote.
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References

Diana Cantor is a lawyer and certified public accountant. She founded, and from 1996 until 2008 was executive director of, the Virginia College Savings Plan (an agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia). She was also chairman of the board of the College Savings Plans Network.[78][81][82] Mrs. Cantor is a managing director in a division of Emigrant Bank, a subsidiary of New York Private Bank & Trust Corp. [83]

Cantor met his wife, Diana Marcy Fine, on a blind date; they were married in 1989.[11][26][78] They have three children, Evan, Jenna, and Michael, and live in Glen Allen, an unincorporated suburban community near Richmond (though Cantor is listed in the House roll as "R-Richmond"). In contrast to her husband, Diana Cantor is a lifelong, liberal Democrat.[79] Contrary to her husband's stated positions, she is pro-choice and supports same-sex marriage.[80]

Personal life

*Write-in candidate notes: In 2000, write-ins received 304 votes. In 2002, write-ins received 153 votes. In 2004, write-ins received 568 votes. In 2006, write-ins received 272 votes. In 2008, write-ins received 683 votes. In 2010, write-ins received 413 votes. In 2012, write-ins received 914 votes.
Virginia's 7th congressional district: Results 2000–2014[75][76][77]
Year Democratic Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct Other Party Votes Pct
2000 Warren A. Stewart 94,935 33% Eric Cantor 192,652 67% *
2002 Ben L. "Cooter" Jones 49,854 30% Eric Cantor 113,658 69% *
2004 (no candidate) Eric Cantor 230,765 75% W. Brad Blanton Independent 74,325 24% *
2006 James M. Nachman 88,206 34% Eric Cantor 163,706 64% W. Brad Blanton Independent 4,213 2% *
2008 Anita Hartke 138,123 37% Eric Cantor 233,531 63%
2010 Rick Waugh 79,607 34% Eric Cantor 138,196 59% Floyd Bayne Independent Green 15,164 6% *
2012 E. Wayne Powell 158,012 41% Eric Cantor 222,983 58%

Electoral history

In 2011, Cantor received two threatening phone calls from Glendon Swift, an antisemite, who left "screaming, profanity-laden messages [that] allegedly stated that he was going to destroy Cantor, rape his daughter and kill his wife." Swift was sentenced in April 2012 to 13 months in federal prison.[74]

Cantor also reported that he had received threatening e-mails related to the passage of the bill.[72] In March 2010, Norman Leboon was arrested for making threats against Cantor and his family.[73]

After the passage of the health care reform bill in March 2010, Cantor reported that somebody had shot a bullet through a window of his campaign office in Richmond, Virginia. A spokesman for the Richmond police later stated that the bullet was not intentionally fired at Cantor's office, saying that it was instead random gunfire, as there were no signs outside the office identifying the office as being Cantor's.[70] Cantor responded to this by saying that Democratic leaders in the House should stop "dangerously fanning the flames" by blaming Republicans for threats against House Democrats who voted for the health care legislation.[71]

Threats and campaign office incident

On Tuesday, September 2, 2014, Moelis & Company announced that it was appointing Eric Cantor as vice chairman and managing director and that he would be elected to the Moelis & Company board of directors.[69]

Following his primary defeat, Cantor announced his resignation as House Majority Leader effective on July 31, 2014 and that he would not campaign for the general election. In an interview with the Richmond Times-Dispatch on July 31, 2014, Cantor announced his resignation from Congress effective on August 18, 2014 and that he asked Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to call for a special election on November 4, 2014 to coincide with the 2014 general election.[66][67][68]

In the June 10, 2014, Republican primary, despite internal campaign polls placing him 30 points ahead of his opponent[59] and his spending advantage (Cantor outspent his opponent 40 to 1),[60] Cantor lost to Tea Party candidate Dave Brat in a major upset, 44.5%–55.5%. This made him the first sitting House majority leader to lose a primary since the position was created in 1899.[61][62][63][64] His loss in the primary was described by the Los Angeles Times as "one of the greatest political upsets of modern times."[59] His loss was attributed to numerous factors including a moderating of his views after entering House leadership, being disconnected from his district, a lack of enthusiasm among his supporters, low turnout for the primary election, and support of Brat from radio talk show hosts.[65]

2014 Republican primary and resignation

Cantor faced a primary challenger, Floyd C. Bayne, in the June 12, 2012 Republican Primary. Cantor won that primary and then defeated Democratic challenger Wayne Powell. Although he won with 58% of the vote, Cantor received his lowest vote percentage since being elected to Congress in 2000.

2012

Cantor won against Democratic challenger Rick Waugh, and Independent Green Party[58] candidate Floyd C. Bayne.

2010

In August 2008 news reports surfaced that Cantor was being considered as John McCain's Vice Presidential running mate, with McCain's representatives seeking documents from Cantor as part of its vetting process.[53][54][55] The idea for Cantor to be McCain's running mate was supported by conservative leaders like Richard Land and Erick Erickson.[56][57]

Cantor won against Democratic nominee Anita Hartke.

2008

In 2006, Cantor was opposed by Democrat James M. Nachman and Independent W. B. Blanton. Cantor won 63.85%, Nachman won 34.4%, and Blanton won 1.64%. There were 272 write-in votes.

2006

In 2004, Cantor was opposed by Independent W. B. Blanton. Cantor won with 75.5% of the vote. Blanton won 24.32% and there were 568 write-in votes.

2004

In 2002, Cantor was opposed by Democrat The Dukes of Hazzard.[51][52]

2002

Cantor was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000, succeeding retiring 20-year incumbent Republican Tom Bliley. He defeated the Democratic nominee, Warren A. Stewart, by nearly 100,000 votes.[50] Cantor had won the closely contested Republican primary over state Senator Stephen Martin by only 263 votes. During his first term, he was one of only two Jewish Republicans serving concurrently in the House of Representatives, the other being Benjamin A. Gilman of New York. Gilman retired in 2002 leaving Cantor as the only Jewish Republican House member.

2000

Cantor was unopposed for re-election to the Virginia House of Delegates.

1999

Cantor was unopposed for re-election to the Virginia House of Delegates.

1997

Cantor was unopposed for re-election to the Virginia House of Delegates.

1995

Cantor was opposed by Independent Reed Halstead in his re-election campaign for the Virginia House of Delegates. Cantor won 79.26% of the vote while Halstead won 20.66%.

1993

Cantor was first elected to the Virginia House of Delegates 73rd district unopposed.

1991

Cantor formerly represented Virginia's 7th congressional district, which stretches from the western end of Richmond, through its suburbs, and northward to Page, Rappahannock Culpeper and parts of Spotsylvania, county. It also includes the towns of Mechanicsville and Laurel. The district is strongly Republican; it has been in Republican hands since 1981 (it was numbered as the 3rd District prior to 1993).[49]

Political campaigns

In an article he wrote for the National Review in 2007, he condemned Nancy Pelosi's diplomatic visit to Syria, and her subsequent meeting with President Bashar al-Assad, whom he referred to as a "dictator and terror-sponsor"; saying that if "Speaker Pelosi’s diplomatic foray into Syria weren’t so harmful to U.S. interests in the Middle East, it would have been laughable."[48]

Other foreign affairs

Cantor has proposed initiatives which purport to help small businesses grow, including a 20 percent tax cut for businesses that employ fewer than 500 people.[47]

As Majority Leader, Cantor shepherded the JOBS Act through the House, which combined bipartisan ideas for economic growth – like crowdfunding for startups – into one piece of legislation. Ultimately, President Obama, Eric Cantor, Steve Case and other leaders joined together at the signing ceremony.[46]

As Majority Leader, Cantor steered the STOCK Act through the House, which requires Congressmen to disclose their stock investments more regularly and in a more transparent manner.[42] The legislation passed the House in a 417–2 bipartisan vote on February 9, 2012. It was ultimately signed by President Obama on April 4, 2012.[43] In July 2012, CNN reported that changes made by the House version of the legislation excluded reporting requirements by spouses and dependent children. Initially, Cantor's office insisted it did nothing to change the intent of the STOCK Act; however, when presented with new information from CNN, the Majority Leader's office recognized that changes had unintentionally been made and offered technical corrections to fulfill the original intent of the legislation.[44] These corrections were passed by Congress on August 3, 2012.[45]

In his book Young Guns, Cantor summarized Keynesian economics with the following opinion, "The idea is that the government can be counted on to spend more wisely than the people."[41]

The following February, Cantor led Republicans in the House of Representatives in voting against the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009[38] and was a prominent spokesman in voicing the many issues he and his fellow Republicans had with the legislation. Cantor voted in favor of a 90% marginal tax rate increase on taxpayer financed bonuses,[39] despite receiving campaign contributions from TARP recipient Citigroup.[40]

On September 29, 2008 Cantor blamed Pelosi for what he felt was the failure of the $700 billion economic bailout bill.[36]He noted that 94 Democrats voted against the measure, as well as 133 Republicans. Though supporting the Federal bailout of the nation's largest private banks, he referred to Pelosi's proposal to appoint a Car czar to run the U.S. Automobile Industry Bailout as a "bureaucratic" imposition on private business.[37]

In October 2008, Cantor advocated and voted for the TARP program which aided distressed banks.[35]

Cantor is a supporter of American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), the largest federation of trade unions in the United States, rates Cantor 0%, indicating an anti-Union voting record.

Economy, budgeting, and trade

Cantor opposes public funding of embryonic stem cell research and opposes elective abortion. He is rated 100% by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) and 0% by NARAL Pro-Choice America, indicating a pro-life voting record. He is also opposed to same-sex marriage, voting to Constitutionally define marriage as between a male and a female in 2006. In November 2007 he voted against prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation. He also supports making flag burning illegal. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) rated him 19% in 2006, indicating an anti-affirmative action voting record. He is opposed to gun control, voting to ban product misuse lawsuits on gun manufacturers in 2005, and he voted not to require gun registration and trigger-lock laws in the District of Columbia. He has a rating of "A" from the National Rifle Association (NRA).[34] On November 2, 2010, Cantor told Wolf Blitzer of CNN that he would try to trim the federal deficit by reducing welfare.

Social issues

In May 2008, Cantor said that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not a "constant sore" but rather "a constant reminder of the greatness of America",[29] and following Barack Obama's election as President in November 2008, Cantor stated that a “stronger U.S.-Israel relationship” remains a top priority for him and that he would be “very outspoken” if Obama "did anything to undermine those ties."[1][30] Shortly after the 2010 midterm elections, Cantor met privately with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, just before Netanyahu was to meet with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. According to Cantor's office, he "stressed that the new Republican majority will serve as a check on the Administration" and "made clear that the Republican majority understands the special relationship between Israel and the United States."[31] Cantor was criticized for engaging in foreign policy;[32] one basis for the criticism was that in 2007, after Nancy Pelosi met with the President of Syria, Cantor himself had raised the possibility "that her recent diplomatic overtures ran afoul of the Logan Act, which makes it a felony for any American 'without authority of the United States' to communicate with a foreign government to influence that government’s behavior on any disputes with the United States."[33]

For much of his career in the House, Cantor was the only Jewish Republican in the United States Congress.[1][10][26] He supports strong United States-Israel relations.[9][10] He cosponsored legislation to cut off all U.S. taxpayer aid to the Palestinian Authority and another bill calling for an end to taxpayer aid to the Palestinians until they stop unauthorized excavations on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.[27] Responding to a claim by the State Department that the United States provides no direct aid to the Palestinian Authority, Cantor claimed that United States sends about US$75 million in aid annually to the Palestinian Authority, which is administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development. He opposed a Congressionally approved three-year package of US$400 million in aid for the Palestinian Authority in 2000 and has also introduced legislation to end aid to Palestinians.[28]

Political positions

Cantor was a strong supporter of the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act, which he was the one to name in Gabriella Miller's honor.[23] The bill, which passed in both the House and the Senate, would end taxpayer contributions to the Presidential Election Campaign Fund and divert the money in that fund to pay for research into pediatric cancer through the National Institutes of Health.[23][24] The total funding for research would come to $126 million over 10 years.[23][24] As of 2014, the national conventions got about 23% of their funding from the Presidential Election Campaign Fund.[25] Cantor said that the bill "clearly reflects Congressional priorities in funding: medical research before political parties and conventions".[23]

Legislation

As House Majority Leader, Cantor was named in House Resolution 368, which was passed by the House Rules Committee on the night of September 30, 2013, the night before the October 2013 government shutdown began, as the only member of the House with the power to bring forth bills and resolutions for a vote if both chambers of Congress disagree on that bill or resolution. Prior to the resolution's passing in committee, it was within the power of every member of the House under House Rule XXII, Clause 4 to be granted privilege to call for a vote. This amendment to the House rules was blamed for causing the partial government shutdown and for prolonging it since Cantor refused to allow the Senate's continuing resolution to be voted on in the House. Journalists and commentators noted during the shutdown that if the Senate's version of the continuing resolution were to be voted on, it would have passed the House with a majority vote since enough Democrats and Republicans supported it, effectively ending the government shutdown.[20][21][22]

Cantor is a member of the Republican Jewish Coalition and the Republican National Committee. He is one of the Republican Party's top fundraisers, having raised over $30 million for the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).[16] He is also one of the three founding members of the GOP Young Guns Program. In the fall of 2010, Cantor wrote a New York Times bestselling book, Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders, with the other two founding members of Young Guns.[17] They describe the vision outlined in the book as "a clear agenda based on common sense for the common good".[18] Cantor said in 2010 that he worked with the Tea Party movement in his district.[19]

On November 19, 2008, Cantor was unanimously elected Republican Whip for the 111th Congress, after serving as Deputy Whip for six years under Blunt. Blunt had decided not to seek reelection to the post after Republican losses in the previous two elections. Cantor was the first member of either party from Virginia to hold the position of Party Whip. As Whip, Cantor was the second-ranking House Republican, behind Minority Leader John Boehner. He was charged with coordinating the votes and messages of Republican House members.[1][14] Cantor became the Majority Leader when the 112th Congress took office on January 3, 2011.[15] He was the second-ranking Republican in the House behind Speaker Boehner, who is considered the leader of the House Republicans.

Cantor and other House and Senate leaders meeting with President Barack Obama in November 2010.

In 2002–only a few weeks after winning a second term–Roy Blunt appointed Cantor Chief Deputy Republican Whip, the highest appointed position in the Republican caucus.[14]

Party leadership

During his first term, Cantor was chairman of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare. He has also served on the House Financial Services Committee and on the House International Relations Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee.

Committee assignments

U.S. House of Representatives

[13]

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