Goodlatte, left, and Cantor, right.
Immigration patriots inside the Beltway report that, despite deceptive noises, the GOP House Leadership version of the Amnesty/ Immigration Surge is not dead—Speaker John Boehner is just lying low after his plan’s disastrous roll-out and will resume the offensive after the primaries. In Virginia, that’s June 10, and two key Boehner lieutenants there do indeed have challengers: House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in the Richmond-area 7th district and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte in the Shenandoah Valley’s 6th district.
Cantor’s challenger: Dave Brat, an economics professor at Randolph-Macon College and something of a political veteran.
Goodlatte’s challenger: Paul Bevington, an earnest 51-year-old high-school teacher and libertarian-leaning tyro.
Cantor has spouted awful Conservatism Inc. boilerplate about legal immigration and both he and Goodlatte also support some form of Amnesty for the millions of illegals who have crossed the border to do the jobs Americans won't do, from slashing suburban soccer moms and tearing their hair out to murdering potential prosecution witnesses who will testify in gang trials. Cantor’s KIDS Act, which would give Amnesty to the illegals brought here as children, is particularly mendacious: apart from the inevitable fraud, it inevitably means Amnesty for the parents as well. How could one offer the former without the latter?
On immigration, Cantor’s opponent, Dave Brat, sounds like he’s been reading VDARE.com: “Cantor is following the agenda of the Business Roundtable and the Chamber of Commerce—pursuing policies that are good for big business, but come at the exclusion of the American people,” he told Watchdog.org’s Virginia reporter. He called Cantor’s support for Amnesty an example of “crony capitalism,” the website reported, and noted what everyone knows by now:
It’s incredibly unpopular. It lowers wages, adds to unemployment, and the taxpayer pays the tab for any benefits to folks coming in. This is not equal treatment under the law. People who are waiting in line [to immigrate] are fuming.
And reprising the thoughts, no doubt unintentionally, of the dear departed Sam Francis, Brat told the website, “[a]t every turn, the GOP establishment is favoring the elites.” Brat knows what anyone with anyone sense knows: “A change in immigration policy means Amnesty.”
That’s what The Richmond Tea Party, which is fed up with Cantor’s move to the left, wants to hear, according to Watchdog.org:
Larry Nordvig, executive director of the Richmond Tea Party, says Brat has his group’s “100 percent” backing.
“Cantor is actively pursuing Amnesty,” Nordvig charges. “He participated in [link added] the ‘Becoming America Tour’ this summer with radical left politicians. He also had his chief of staff host a ‘summit’ with representatives from rabid Amnesty groups, like La Raza and the ACLU.”
GOP challenger rips ‘crony’ Cantor on immigration, By Kenric Ward February 6, 2014
Virginia Right agrees. “Frankly, Cantor is an embarrassment and a spineless representative,” the website said after Cantor’s latest vote to increase the debt limit. And this was the headline at Virginia Right last month: “Eric ‘Crazy Ivan’ Cantor Does About Face on Conservatives – Embraces Liberalism, Amnesty, Obamacare.”
Even Richard Viguerie, Chairman Emeritus of Conservatism Inc., permitted his Conservative HQ website to nail Cantor to the wall. “Cantor always sides with Big Business, Big Government and the Capitol Hill establishment,” the website declared.
Eric Cantor long ago abandoned whatever principles he may have had when first elected and, we should emphasize, any pretense of serving in Congress to advance conservative governance. Eric Cantor is all about maintaining the power of the Republican establishment and that is indeed the opposite of what we are looking for in a conservative leader.
Eric Cantor Earns an Opponent - Dave Brat By CHQ Staff, February 10, 2014
Other issues that have Cantor’s conservative base fuming are his vote for the Ryan-Murray budget deal and his failure to fight Obamacare competently.
Despite the support, Brat’s race won’t be easy. Cantor is unlikely to accept a debate challenge that would expose him to fusillade from the right, and he’ll have the K-Street influence peddlers and moneybags at the Chamber of Commerce on his side.
Still, Brat has the Tea Party. If those folks come out for Brat in big numbers, it’s not impossible Cantor could be trouble. Recall that it’s backing him 100 percent, and that these were the people who put Ken Cuccinelli atop the GOP ticket for governor in 2012.
Brat is smart and telegenic, and fluently speaks the Tea Party patois.
And he doesn’t even have to win to kill the Amnesty/ Immigration Surge. One Washington immigration patriot says that if Brat started moving up in the polls, Cantor will balk.
Bob Goodlatte’s challenger, Paul Bevington, is not as much as a threat at first glance. No one in the district has ever heard of him. And his lack of experience will hurt. A rookie mistake, for instance was admitting that he was nervous in his first radio interview and might not sound too smart. Not good. Also, he worked for Karen Kwiatkowski, who ran for the Republican nomination against Goodlatte in 2012. (She got a respectable 34% of the vote on a constitutional, limited government platform). As one concerned immigration patriot said when he learned of Bevington: “If he's another [Karen] Kwiatkowski open borders, cheap-labor type it’s a total waste of time. If however, he’s firmly opposed to Amnesty and mass immigration, he can hit Goodlatte where he is now extremely vulnerable.”
Goodlatte, a Mary Baker Eddyite from Massachusetts, is now Chairman of the Judiciary Committee. He will have considerable influence on any immigration legislation, which would be good news if Goodlatte were as conservative on that issue as he is on everything else. But he isn't.
In fact, Goodlatte’s position on immigration is nothing if not a work in progress, to put it charitably. Like losing 2012 GOP gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli, Goodlatte scrubbed his website of a fairly tough (for a Republican) statement on immigration, but backpedaled when the great unwashed noticed, replacing it with another weaker page that opens with the usual bromide: “We are a nation of immigrants.” The new page, as The Daily Caller reported, left room for Goodlatte to make this statement to Telemundo when he thought no one was listening:
I see no reason why we can’t also have an agreement that shows how people who are not lawfully here can be able to be lawfully here — able to live here, work here, travel to and from their home country, be able to own a business, pay their taxes.
Unsurprisingly, Goodlatte was pushing Cantor’s kiddie Amnesty in the Judiciary Committee in July. Said Goodlatte:
“These children came here through no fault of their own and many of them know no other home than the United States. Any successful immigration reform plan must improve our legal immigration programs, strengthen border security and the interior enforcement of our immigration laws, and find a way to fairly deal with those who are currently in the country unlawfully."[DREAMers Tell Republican House: That's Not Our Dream, ABC, July 23, 2013]
Cantor, of course, agreed, saying in the same report that “it's an issue of decency, of compassion.”
“These, in many instances, are kids without a country if we don't allow them to become full citizens of our country. Where else would these kids go?”
Uh, home with their parents where they belong? Again, giving the kiddies Amnesty means giving the parents Amnesty, and Cantor, Goodlatte and their Leftist allies damn well know it.
Virginia's immigration patriots can take heart in Bevington’s public appearance before Republican women in Shenandoah County. He called Goodlatte a flip-flopper on immigration, then nailed the Bay Stater for supporting a “path to citizenship” for illegals.
Goodlatte’s constituents vote him back into office with Soviet levels of support every other November. It's a wonder the Democrats can find anyone to run against him. Come to think of it, sometimes they can’t. Goodlatte faced no opposition in 1994, 2000 through 2006 and again in 2010.
Paul Bevington’s battle is more than just uphill. But, in the words of a great Virginian, he is a citizen who has taken up arms for his country. This is only the second time Goodlatte has had primary opposition in 12 elections. It could be a trend.
Pádraic O'Bannon, [Email him] a writer and drinker like many of Celtic blood, thinks deep thoughts about politics, culture and religion.