The Corner

Don’t forget Cantor!

One caveat about that Journal editorial today. It rightly lauds the new generation of Republicans in the House: Pence, Shadegg, Hensarling, Flake, and Ryan. But Eric Cantor deserves to be on that list too. His status as one of the brightest new lights in Congress is obscured somewhat because he’s running Blunt’s campaign. That’s because Cantor gave Blunt his word that he wouldn’t run against him and he wants to stay loyal to the man who made him his deputy. That’s obviously admirable. But it’s an odd situation, since Blunt is probably fighting just to barely hang on, whereas if his deputy were to run, people think he (Cantor) would win it easily. (Fred Barnes noted this last night.) Such are the vagaries of leadership politics. But people need to know that Cantor is talented, hard working, principled, well-liked around the conference, and gets how the GOP needs to cleanse itself. He’s a major asset to the party. I’d hope that if Shadegg wins the whip post, he’d implore Cantor to stay as deputy whip, although I know that this isn’t very likely given the kind of bad blood that develops in leadership races.