Thursday was Congressman Eric Cantor’s last day as majority leader and on Friday he announced his resignation from Congress effective August 18. He explained why he had asked the governor for a special election (see Cantor to resign from Congress on Aug. 18 by Markus Schmidt):
Cantor said he has asked Gov. Terry McAuliffe to call a special election for his district that coincides with the general election on Nov. 4.
By having a special election in November, the winner would take office immediately, rather than in January with the next Congress.
“That way he will also have seniority, and that will help the interests of my constituents (because) he can be there in that consequential lame-duck session,” Cantor said.
Cantor’s resignation marks the end of a successful 14-year congressional run that included his role as House majority leader for more than three years and the prospect of becoming the next speaker of the House.
The Congressman talked with the Richmond Times-Dispatch about the move but stopped short of revealing his future plans:
Cantor did not reveal specific plans for his life after public service.
“My wife and I are sort of going to make those kind of decisions, and I do think they are best made as private citizens,” he said. “But I’m looking forward to being a very active member in that democratic system and advocate for the cause that I believe in.”
In announcing his decision in an op-ed, he expressed sadness and said serving his constituents had been a joy (see also Eric Cantor says goodbye, announces recognition from Congress). Many feel the same sadness at seeing him leave knowing all he accomplished during his time in Congress. The future will definitely be bright for this shining star.