The Fall of Eric Cantor: An Outbreak of Paedophobia, The Fear Of Children

June 11, 2014 | | The Huffington Post |

The slam-bang, end-of-the-world defeat of Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor signifies... what? The chattering class will find support for its varied pre-existing explanations, a lot of it true. But don't discount pure bad luck and bad timing.

Outside of the right-wing echo chamber, the notion of Eric Cantor as insufficiently conservative is tough to accept. Smart he is. He provided intellectual cover and legislative expertise to a movement seeking to repeal the New Deal, Obamacare and the social safety network. There were none of the warning signs of carelessness or ideological impurity that often lead to sudden defeat, especially in primaries.

Except. Cantor was not a reliable opponent of immigration reform, or amnesty, depending on your vocabulary. Within Tea Party circles that constitutes surrender to the Chamber of Commerce, a bastion of liberalism. In a Republican primary, that's an accusation that can stick, and it stuck to Cantor.