Politico reports that, like everyone else, the Obama White House expected Rep. Eric Cantor to defeat Dave Brat last night. Cantor was the pivot man in the House on the immigration bill, a fact not lost on his own voters, whose trust he had frittered away. After Cantor’s expected win, Obama and his aides had a series of maneuvers that they believed would “shame” Cantor into getting the House to pass the Senate’s bill.
Assuming Cantor’s win a foregone conclusion, Pfeiffer in April organized a conference call that included representatives from the Democratic National Committee, Americans United for Change and the Service Employees International Union to run a coordinated effort to pressure and publicly humiliate Cantor with moderates and big donors ahead of an expected speaker run.
Cantor was to be the face of an obstructionist Republican Party that’s stopping reform and, if he didn’t let a vote come to the floor, set the stage for Obama to announce executive actions to limit deportations in August.
At his home, at his offices, at his public events, they were planning half-flash mob, half-guerrilla protests like the one that ended up storming his election night party, but only after he’d given his surprise concession speech Tuesday. They were going to chase Cantor around his district and Washington and to New York donor meetings using actions ranging from marches of immigrant children to prayer vigils that single him out.
“What we really want to do is shame him in front of the other constituency that’s important to him — the business interests, Wall Street and high-dollar donors who are either more moderate on this issue or more thoughtful and want it removed as an issue,” said one person involved in the effort.
This is gangsterism. This White House is full of terrible, awful people who aren’t above resorting to brownshirt tactics to get their way. January 2017 can’t come fast enough.
By the way, see who the White House doesn’t care about in all that? They intended to use the unions, the hardcore activists and the fat cats to pincer Cantor into doing a deal on immigration — a deal that the voters didn’t want him to do.