Cantor Banter – Or What The Hell Is This Guy Doing To Help The Country?

I suggest anyone in Virginia go to www.cnn.com and search under “earmarks” and then under their representative in Congress and find out if they are sharing their earmark requests – if they are transparent on these requests – if they are willing to be accountable for the earmark requests they make.

I live in Eric Cantor’s district - the seventh district in Virginia, and when asked by CNN to disclose his earmarks, the response was “no response”.

Now Congressman Cantor is the fair-haired boy of the Republican Party, the lapdog of his party, and supposed representative of 700,000 Virginians, most who probably have never heard of him. But lobbyists have:

“Representative Eric Cantor, a Virginia Republican famous on K Street for his annual fund-raising weekends in Beverly Hills and South Beach, has recently invited lobbyists to join him for some expensive cups of coffee. A $2,500 contribution from a lobbyist’s political action committee entitles the company’s lobbyist to join Mr. Cantor at a Starbucks near his Capitol Hill office four times this spring.” New York Times February 11, 2007


Few follow the votes in Congress of Virginia’s Mr. No, but here are a few of his recent votes – ALL NO

Implement the 9/11 Commission Recommendations Act
Fair Minimum Wage Act
Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act
Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation Act
Creative Long-Term Energy Alternatives for the Nation Act
Iraq War Policy Resolution
The Employee Free Choice Act
Freedom of Information Act Amendment of 2007
Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2007
Accountability of Contracting Act
Gulf Coast Hurricane Housing Recovery Act of 2007
U. S. Troop Readiness, Veterans Health, and Iraq Accountability Act
Improving Head Start Act
Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act
Agricultural Disaster Assistance Appropriations Act
Federal Price Gouging Prevention Act
Homeland Security Appropriations FY2008


By the way, the majority in Congress passed all of these measures.

Most of his constituents don’t live the cozy life of Congressman Cantor and his wife, who is a member of the board of directors of Media General Inc., the parent company of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond’s right leaning sole daily paper. Most are hard working, common-sense, middle of the road, average souls, who don’t like the red/blue pissing contest Cantor perpetuates, the grid-lock he contributes to – and particularly the lack of progress on the major problems facing our state and nation to which he seems to not have one creative initiative. Need I mention the war, tax reform, out of control health costs, loss of high paying jobs, and on and on and on?

His district has a proud heritage and certainly there must be someone who is more capable, more dedicated to reform, and who can provide a modicum of leadership and ability to bring about change. And there must be someone out there of any party who can successfully challenge his next bid at reelection to his cushy position.

Excuse me, but the Declaration of Independence does begin with the words “We the people . . . ”.

Comments

Chris said…
Bill,

Your comments are a little off base. Not many live the cozy life of almost all of our elected federal officials, not just Mr. Cantor.

The two party bickering is on both sides of the aisle and is not perpetuated by Republicans alone.

If only we could have representatives in government that would realize that their job is not to aspire to have a career in politics, but to dow what their constiutents put them there to do, we'd all, liberals AND conservatives, would be in a much better place.

While it's a simple thought, if you don't like Mr. Cantor, work to have him out of office next time he runs for re-election.
Bill Garnett said…
Chris,

I humbly disagree. This is not so much about Congressman Cantor as it is about the disconnect between most of our elected officials and their constituencies. It is about a Congress that has been ineffective in dealing with national problems that threaten our common future. This is about the failure of democracy to bring common sense solutions to our commonly faced problems. And it is about, as you mention, those who appear to prioritize their personal stake in moving within the sphere of career politician and highly paid lobbyist, above their responsibility to protect the common good.

I have conservative views – I support family values, individual responsibility, free market capitalism, a lean and non-intrusive government. But I am also progressive – quality of life should trump unfettered capitalism. Science, facts, reason, and logic should trump religious beliefs in governing. And I argue that the common good quality of life is a better determinant metric for evaluating legislative initiatives.

My vote will not dislodge an ineffective Congressman. Only by leveraging my voice, my concern, can I make any real difference. And like you, I use my blog as one avenue to do this. We, as a nation are adrift in apathy and indifference in the face of very serious threats. This is a time for enlightened, imaginative, capable leadership and I only argue that Congressman Cantor has not risen to that call – I am confident that there must be someone, much more capable, in the 7th Congressional District who can and should challenge him at reelection.
Anonymous said…
Cantor is a huge embarrassment to the district. From Save Richmond's last civic quiz:

http://saverichmond.com/?p=400

7th District GOP Congressman Eric Cantor attacks House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s recent trip to Syria on his spiffy new blog. “Pelosi’s decision damaged the security of Middle East and is bad for America,” he writes. But what does Rep. Cantor fail to tell his area constituents about this “dangerous” trip:

A. Several Republican lawmakers accompanied Pelosi.
B. Pelosi was told beforehand by President Bush that her trip to meet with President Assad of Syria was no threat to national security.
C. Republican lawmakers had made earlier, similar diplomatic trips to Syria that Rep. Cantor did not object to.
D. In meeting with Syria, Pelosi was following the recommendations of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group.
E. All of these facts went unmentioned by Eric Cantor

The answer is E.
J.Scott said…
Mr. Cantor has missed almost 8% of the House votes since January, the last one being stem cell research while out of the country.
It seems to me that Mr. Cantor is more concerned with raising money in his PAC for other candidates than he his representing his district.
A few examples that lead to me questioning Cantor's fiscal conservatism:
(32-HR5) voted against lowering student interest loan rates (124 Republicans supported bill)
(18-HR2) voted against raising minimum wage increase (82 Republicans supported bill)
(23-HR4) voted against a measure calling for the federal government to negiotiate with drugmakers directly for lower prescription drug pricing over the insurance companies negotiating
**you know that insurance plan Presidential candidates always speak of about how everyone should have a right to that kinda plan...evidently Mr. Cantor does not think so.

Here's the kicker:
(40-HR6) Cantors vote against the repeal of the 2004 tax break given oil companies that lowered their corporate income tax structure and also required them to pay a "conservation fee" for Gulf of Mexico exploration. Apparently the billions the oil companies have made and the blowted salary structure of its executives it just fine with Cantor.
If there is a question as to exactly who Cantor might "truly" be representing here folks look at his PAC and who he has been raising money from his last two terms.
Enough said!
Friend of Perry DeMay said…
I wonder if Canter's wife is controlling the media of the Richmond Times Dispatch to prevent negative stories from running about Dennis Proffitt? This is just another good ole boy trying to protect old money.
Anonymous said…
The most recent demonstration of selfish behavior by Mr. Cantor yesterday whining about the speech made by Nancy Pelosi reminds me of a child saying, "I am taking my marbles and going home because you called me bad names." He is obviously too impressed with himself to properly serve his district and his country. We need better leadership.
red e fine said…
"red/blue pissing contest". great line, great line.

The GOP has been piss drunk and marking territory they have no right to the last two administrations. Now we've got the DNC hooked up to a garden hose watering down the stale and crusted splash stains left all over the country and around the world.

Meanwhile, the GOP is doing its best to start a flatulence movement to stink up the DNC efforts of cleaning up red vomit everywhere.

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