Cantor's loss makes history, shocking local Tea Party/Grassroots America members
POSTED: Wednesday, June 11, 2014 - 6:13pm
UPDATED: Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 1:39pm
Tyler , TX (KETK) — Before last night, David Brat was a "no-name" economics professor from Virginia, but with a big boost of support from the tea party, he's now known as the man who defeated house majority leader, Eric Cantor. It was a monumental win for the "small guy" Tuesday night, and the GOP primary election left many people like local political activist Tammy Blair stunned. "I was shocked...I mean to me its hope." said Blair. She believes this is a step in the right direction, and added, "you're always told that these guys way up here, you know, the establishment can't be brought down, you can't beat them. Well, come to find out maybe you can."
The seven-term Virginia congressman made history as the first house majority leader to lose in a primary.
"This proved that big money doesn't always win big races," said JoAnn Fleming, Grassroots America: We the People executive director. She also said Brat's door to door campaigning is what lead him to victory. "We're just very proud of them, they worked very hard," said Fleming. Blair agreed, saying, "they were able to get out there and work, and inform people."
Both said it was cantor's push for amnesty, that ultimately lost him the election. "If they continue to push it, they're going to make a lot of people angry," said Blair. Fleming said, 'at the end of the day people decided they were tired with the incumbents and they threw him out."
Many are saying this is a blow to the Republican establishment, but US Representative Jeb Hensarling of East Texas told KETK in a statement:
""Eric Cantor is a friend and ally on many fronts. He was, is, and will continue to be a good leader and servant for his district and our nation, and I am grateful for his service. While one chapter will ultimately close for him, I know that Eric will continue to work to advance the cause of freedom."
He also stated, "I am humbled by the many people who have approached me about serving our Republican Conference in a different capacity in the future. There are many ways to advance the causes of freedom and free enterprise, and I am prayerfully considering the best way I can serve in those efforts."
US Representative Louie Gohmert of Tyler said:
"Since I arrived on Capitol Hill, as a freshman in Congress, Eric Cantor has been a good, honorable friend. Although we have been strongly at odds on some very specific issues, he has been a thoughtful and diligent Member of Congress. It truly has been a pleasure to serve with him. Eric and his family deserve and will have my thoughts, prayers and support as they transition into another place of service."