- Posted June 11, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Cantor's Sin - Morality Tale for Hillary, Other Politicians?
The aftershocks keep rolling this afternoon throughout the American political landscape. The epicenter is located in Washington DC and hitting Republican elected officials where they live.
Though Virginia was the state feeling the impact initially when Professor Dave Brat came out of nowhere to unseat the current Majority Leader of the House of Representatives in his home district, the shock waves are being felt coast to coast across the ocean to Hawaii and north through Canada to Alaska.
How could what was unthinkable happen?
Eric Cantor was the second most powerful member of Congress.
Cantor was a face that many across the nation identified as representative of the Tea Party.
Cantor was even being named most likely heir apparent to Speaker of the House John Boehner.
Many are seeing Brat besting Cantor by more than 10 percentage points as a surge of the Tea Party after several setbacks thus far this primary season leading to the November Mid-Term Elections.
Brat did have some Tea Party support and did run to the right of Cantor on immigration, but even the primary winner said he is not a Tea Party member.
Talking heads, pundits, political analysts, pollsters are all trying to sort out how a sitting #2 in the US House could lose his district - not to the other party in a general election - but to a member of his own party in a primary election of the faithful.
Some are trying to lay blame on the open primary system of Virginia claiming it was Democrats crossing over which defeated the GOP's second-in-command.
I beg to differ in the opinions and perspectives of the chattering class.
From where I sit in the Cornfield as I look through the tiny stalks trying to break through the ground and grow, it is very evident that Cantor committed the sin whch has brought down politicians from time immemorial.
Cantor is guilty of the sin of presumption.
He presumed he could not lose.
He presumed he was invincible.
He presumed the base, the electoral voters, would follow along and dutifully pull the lever beside his name.
Cantor in the words made famous in so many other situations associated with celebrities and others, "believed his own press."
On election day, Cantor was in the Capitol - not his home district until too late.
Was he measuring the drapes or picking out furniture for the Speaker's office?
Was he spending too much time raising money for candidates in other states at his own peril?
Was Cantor talking to his constituents?
Was Cantor listening to his constituents?
Was Cantor in touch with his constituents?
The answers are clear and in the result of last night's shocking upheaval in Virginia's 7th Dristrict.
Brat was out in the district, making his case, rubbing shoulders and elbows with the people.
Cantor, on the other hand appears to have looked down from his tower and thought of Brat as an ant to be squished - not the Jack the Giant Killer, Brat actually was.
Unlike Thad Cochran who is in a struggle for his career in Mississippi, Cantor did not spend the time and energy with his own constituents to show them he appreciated them, was working for them and wanted to represent them by actively campaigning in person.
Virginians got tired of being taken for granted.
Cochran now must prove he is still the Senator from Mississippi - not the man who went to Washington and forgot his roots and the people who put him there.
Or - Cochran could face the same fate as Cantor.
This brings me to the point that Cantor's sin of presumption may be a morality or cautionary tale for Hillary Clinton and other politicians of all stripes.
Never presume the election is in the bag.
Never presume you are still trusted and wanted by the people.
Never presume money is enough to win an election.
Never presume you are too important to boot out of office.
Let's look at the former First Lady, former Senator from New York, the former Secretary of State and the presumptive heir to President Barack Obama - Hillary Rodham Clinton, for a moment.
In 2006, 2007 and early 2008, the buzz was that Clinton would be and had the right to be the Democratic nominee to replace outgoing President George W. Bush in the White House.
All the talk was that Clinton could not lose.
Out from the prairie came the junior Senator from Illinois with no experience to speak of and without putting time in the trenches. That Senator upended the political wisdom of the time to usurp the Queen of Democratic Politics and take the scepter of the Party of Jefferson and catapult into the White House not once, but twice now.
Spring forward to 2014.
All the buzz is Hillary has paid her dues and is entitled to succeed Obama.
All the talk is that Hillary cannot lose.
From the Cornfield, Mrs. Clinton and all elected officials take the strange twist of fate that Eric Cantor did not survive after committing the sin of presumption to be a morality tale for each of you.
To do otherwise could be political suicide.
Like it or not, the people can still speak when they want to and do the unexpected.
Never let it be said you have pulled a Cantor.