Eric Cantor

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Eric Cantor
Eric Cantor.JPG
U.S. House, Virginia, District 7
In office
January 3, 2001-present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 14
PredecessorThomas J. Bliley, Jr. (R)
House Majority Leader
January 3, 2011 - Present
House Minority Whip
January 3, 2009 – January 3, 2011
House Republican Chief Deputy Whip
January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2009
Base salary$193,400/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 7, 2000
Next primaryJune 10, 2014
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$26,221,335
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Virginia House of Delegates
Bachelor'sGeorge Washington University
Master'sColumbia University
J.D.College of William and Mary
Date of birthJune 6, 1963
Place of birthRichmond, Virginia
ProfessionLawyer, Businessman
Net worth$9,345,056
Office website
Campaign website
Eric Cantor (b. June 6, 1963, in Richmond, Virginia) is a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives representing Virginia's 7th Congressional District. Cantor was first elected to Virginia's 7th Congressional District in 2000 and ran for re-election on November 6, 2012. Cantor is currently serving his sixth consecutive term.[1]. Cantor is the House majority leader of the 113th congress.[2]

Cantor ran for re-election in Virginia's 7th Congressional District in 2014. The primary election takes place June 10, 2014.

Prior to being the House majority leader, Cantor served as the House minority whip from 2008-2011.

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Cantor is an average Republican member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Republican Party on the majority of bills.


Before entering politics, Cantor was a lawyer.[3]


The following is an abbreviated list of Cantor's professional and political career:[4]

Committee assignments

U.S. House


As majority leader, Cantor was not on any committees for the 113th congress.


As majority leader, Cantor was not on any committees for the 112th congress.


Legislative actions

113th Congress


The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 224 out of the 3215 introduced bills (7 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session.[5] For more information pertaining to Cantor's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[6]

National security

NSA surveillance programs amendment

The U.S. House of Representatives voted on July 24, 2013, to narrowly defeated an amendment brought by Justin Amash meant to halt the National Security Agency's bulk collection of surveillance data.[7] The amendment would have stripped funding for an NSA program that collects the telephone records of people in the United States but not the content of calls.[8]

The vote scrambled the usual ideological fault lines in the House, with conservative Republicans siding with liberal Democrats.[9] The House voted 205-217 to defeat the amendment with more Democrats than Republicans voting in favor of the amendment.[10][8][11] From Amash's own party, 134 Republicans voted against the amendment, with only 94 agreeing with it, while 111 Democrats voted for the amendment, with 83 voting against.[10]

Among the Republicans opposing the measure was Michele Bachmann. Bachmann defended the NSA's data collection programs, arguing that "there’s no Fourth Amendment expectation of privacy or right to the business-record exception" concerning the collection of phone metadata.[10] She continued by saying, “If we take this program and remove from the United States the distinct advantage that we have versus any other country, it will be those who are seeking to achieve the goals of Islamic jihad who will benefit by putting the United States at risk, and it will be the United States which will be at risk. I believe that we need to win the War on Terror. We need to defeat the goals and aims of Islamic jihad, and for that reason I will be voting no on the Amash amendment.”[10] Bachmann was joined by, among others, Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor in opposing the amendment.[10]

The House on July 24, 2013, overwhelmingly passed a separate NSA amendment, put forward by Rep. Mike Pompeo, that was intended as a middle ground but was blasted by civil liberties advocates as achieving nothing.[8] The measure would ensure that the NSA is barred from acquiring or storing the content of emails and phone calls of people in the United States, but it would allow the NSA to continue storing phone metadata.[8]

See also: United States involvement in Syria

Cantor released a statement regarding congressional approval for intervention in Syria. He said, "I intend to vote to provide the President of the United States the option to use military force in Syria. Understanding that there are differing opinions on both sides of the aisle, it is up to President Obama to make the case to Congress and to the American people that this is the right course of action, and I hope he is successful in that endeavor.”[12]


Voted "Yes" Cantor voted in support of HR 1960 - the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014. The bill passed the House on June 14, 2013, with a vote of 315 - 108. Both parties were somewhat divided on the vote.[13]

DHS Appropriations

Voted "Yes" Cantor voted in support of HR 2217 - the DHS Appropriations Act (2014) Act of 2014. The bill passed the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 245 - 182 and was largely along party lines.[13]

Keystone Pipeline Amendment

Voted "No" Cantor voted in opposition of House Amendment 69, which would have amended HR 3 to "require that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, in consultation with the Department of Homeland Security, conduct a study of the vulnerabilities of the Keystone XL pipeline to a terrorist attack and certify that necessary protections have been put in place." The amendment failed on May 22, 2013, with a vote of 176 - 239 and was largely along party lines.[13]

CISPA (2013)

Voted "Yes" Cantor voted in support of HR 624 - the CISPA (2013). The bill passed the House on April 18, 2013, with a vote of 288 - 127. The bill would allow federal intelligence agencies to share cybersecurity intelligence and information with private entities and utilities.[14] The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.[13]


Farm bill

Yea3.png On January 29, 2014, the U.S. House approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[15] The bill passed by a vote of 251-166. The nearly 1,000-page bill reformed and continued various programs of the Department of Agriculture through 2018. The $1 trillion bill expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that would kick in when prices drop.[16][17] However, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[17] Cantor voted with 161 other Republican representatives in favor of the bill.

2014 Budget

Yea3.png On January 15, 2014, the Republican-run House approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[18][19] The House voted 359-67 for the 1,582-page bill, with 64 Republicans and three Democrats voting against the bill.[19] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[20] It increased the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel by 1 percent, increased Head Start funding for early childhood education by $1 billion, reduced funding to the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency, and protected the Affordable Care Act from any drastic cuts. Cantor voted with the majority of the Republican party in favor of the bill.[18]

Government shutdown
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "Yes" On September 30, 2013, the House passed a final stopgap spending bill before the shutdown went into effect. The bill included a one-year delay of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate and would have also stripped the bill of federal subsidies for congressional members and staff. It passed through the House with a vote of 228-201.[21] At 1 a.m. on October 1, 2013, one hour after the shutdown officially began, the House voted to move forward with going to a conference. In short order, Sen. Harry Reid rejected the call to conference.[22] Cantor voted to approve the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[23]

Voted "Yes" The shutdown finally ended on October 16, 2013, when the House took a vote on HR 2775 after it was approved by the Senate. The bill to reopen the government lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[24] The House passed the legislation shortly after the Senate, by a vote of 285-144, with all 144 votes against the legislation coming from Republican members. Cantor voted for HR 2775.[25]

Cantor urged Congress to sit down and talk on October 1, 2013, the first day of the government shutdown. He said, "I just think that we need to talk. None of us want to be here and the only way to resolve this is to sit down and talk and to iron out the differences. I don’t think that there is any other way to do this other than to sit down and talk." He added, "The American people did elect this president, but the American people also elected a Republican Congress. So we have a divided government because the American people voted that way. They expect us to sit down and work things out and work together." Cantor did not think the public was concerned much with partisan politics, despite the shutdown. He said, "I don’t think that the working moms and dads and families in Richmond are waking up thinking about the Republican Party, the Democrat Party, they’re worried about their financial security, their health care security and frankly our nation’s security."[26]

Cantor planned to place his pay in escrow for the duration of the shutdown.[27]

Farm Bill 2013

Cantor was blasted by several members of Congress over his failure to get the farm bill passed. Democrat Marcia Fudge came away from a meeting ready to make concessions on food stamps, but her meeting with Cantor left her frustrated. Fudge said, "He doesn’t want a bill. Just in terms of our discussion, it was clear to me, it was my sense that he really does not want a bill." Cantor's office claimed that he wanted to create a replacement for the nutrition program--the old one was dropped at his urging from the farm bill in June 2013.[28] In June 2013, Minority Whip Leader Steny Hoyer traded barbs with Cantor over the initial failure of the bill. Hoyer blamed Cantor, alleging he, "..turned a bipartisan bill... into a partisan bill." Cantor retorted, "It really is a disappointing day. I think that the minority has been a disappointing player today."[29] Peterson expressed frustration with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor while at Farmfest in Minnesota in August 2013. Peterson said Cantor was the main roadblock in getting a farm bill passed. He added, "I don't get along with that guy and I don't know what to do about him."[30]


Morton Memos Prohibition

Voted "Yes" Cantor supported House Amendment 136 - Prohibits the Enforcement of the Immigration Executive Order. The amendment was adopted by the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 224 - 201. The purpose of the amendment as stated on the official text is to "prohibit the use of funds to finalize, implement, administer, or enforce the Morton Memos." These memos would have granted administrative amnesty to certain illegal aliens residing in the United States.[31] The vote largely followed party lines.[32]


Repealing Obamacare

Voted "Yes" Cantor supported all attempts to repeal or delay the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.[33]

Catastrophic coverage

Cantor blasted the decision in December 2013 that would allow people who lost their health care as a result of the ACA to purchase catastrophic insurance policies no matter their age. Cantor said, "Our entire health care system can't be fundamentally changed at any given time subject to the random impulses of President Obama. The White House actions clearly prove ObamaCare can't work as designed. It's time for ObamaCare to be delayed for all."[34]

Social issues


Voted "Yes" Cantor supported HR 1797 - Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The resolution passed the House on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 228 - 196. The purpose of the bill is to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.[35]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal Cliff

Voted "No" Cantor voted against the fiscal cliff compromise bill, which made permanent most of the Bush tax cuts originally passed in 2001 and 2003 while also raising tax rates on the highest income levels. He was 1 of 151 Republicans that voted against the bill. The bill was passed in the House by a 257 - 167 vote on January 1, 2013.[36]


See also: Louisiana's 5th Congressional District special election, 2013

In the special election to fill Rodney Alexander's 5th District seat in Louisiana, Cantor endorsed state senator Neil Riser (R).[37][38]

Political positions


Cantor began abstaining from earmarks in 2004, but he was joined by four other Republican U.S. representatives in 2010. In March 2010, House Republicans passed a year-long ban on all earmarking. This meant all Republicans were to abstain from approving money within appropriations bills aimed for specific programs, states or localities.

Republicans announced another moratorium for fiscal year 2012.[39]

Comments on Randel's arrest

Although Cantor had previously said there should be "zero-tolerance" for ethics violations within the Republican party, a statement made by an aide suggested a softer stance following Representative Trey Radel's arrest and guilty plea for cocaine possession. Cantor's aide said Cantor is "glad he is seeking treatment and encourages him in his recovery. This is clearly a difficult time for him and his family."[40]

Kids Act

In January 2014, Steny Hoyer attacked Eric Cantor prior to Cantor's speech at the Brookings Institute. Cantor's speech promoted school choice as a way of reducing income inequality. Hoyer said, "Talk is cheap. Performance is what pays off. The Kids Act provides for authorization, not appropriation, for pediatric research. Now, the [National Institutes of Health] spends $800 million annually on pediatric health. This bill, which they talk about and which Mr. Cantor thinks made a good statement, does make a good statement about the need for kids research [but Republicans] voted for a budget offered by [Paul] Ryan that would have the effect of cutting NIH by $6 billion, if the cuts were applied across the board. And of course politically it sounds very good because they take away from politicians and conventions. I don’t think anybody cares whether they take that money away or not, whether you have the public pay for that or the private sector pay for it." Hoyer concluded, "It’s very nice to go around the country and say you’re for education, but … you cut the Labor-Health bill by 22.6 percent in your budget. It’s very nice to say you’re for No Child Left Behind, but you didn’t fund it. So talk is cheap, performance is what counts, it’s the Reagan ‘Trust but Verify. Okay, so you say nice things. What are you doing?"[41]

Cantor's spokesman Doug Heye responded, "House Republicans put talk into action by passing the Student Success Act, which included a Cantor amendment directing Title I money follow the student, and overwhelmingly approving the Gabriella Miller Kids First Act. We’re especially grateful for the 72 House Democrats who rejected both Mr. Hoyer’s cynicism and whip and voted for Gabriella Miller’s bill."[41]

Presidential preference


See also: Endorsements by state officials of presidential candidates in the 2012 election

Eric Cantor endorsed Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election. [42]



See also: Virginia's 7th Congressional District elections, 2014

Cantor ran in the 2014 election for the U.S. House to represent Virginia's 7th District. Cantor sought the Republican nomination in the primary. The general election took place November 4, 2014.


See also: Virginia's 7th Congressional District elections, 2012

Cantor won re-election. He defeated opponent Floyd Bayne in the June 12 Republican primary and E. Wayne Powell (D) in the general election on November 6, 2012.[43][44]

U.S. House, Virginia District 7 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic E. Wayne Powell 41.4% 158,012
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngEric Cantor Incumbent 58.4% 222,983
     Write-In N/A 0.2% 914
Total Votes 381,909
Source: Virginia State Board of Elections "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"
U.S. House, Virginia District 7 Republican Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngEric Cantor Incumbent 79.4% 37,369
Floyd Bayne 20.6% 9,668
Total Votes 47,037

Full history


Cantor's first primary ad, "Decision."

Cantor's second primary ad, "Advisor."


Cantor's first television ad of the 2014 primary, "Decision," began airing Wednesday, April 23. Cantor also released a similar radio ad.[51]

Cantor's second ad, "Advisor," attacks, David Brat, by trying "to tie Brat to tax hikes proposed under then Democratic Gov. Tim Kaine."[52] In addition, Cantor's campaign created a website exposing Brat's record.

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Cantor is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Cantor raised a total of $26,221,335 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 4, 2013.[53]

Eric Cantor's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $7,632,717
2010 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $5,955,025
2008 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $3,990,894
2006 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $3,310,828
2004 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $2,472,066
2002 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $1,440,428
2000 US House (Virginia, District 7) Won $1,419,377
Grand Total Raised $26,221,335


Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Cantor's reports.[54]


Breakdown of the source of Cantor's campaign funds before the 2012 election.

Cantor won re-election to the U.S. House in 2012. During that re-election cycle, Cantor's campaign committee raised a total of $7,632,717 and spent $7,477,917.[60]

Cost per vote

Cantor spent $33.54 per vote received in 2012.


Breakdown of the source of Cantor's campaign funds before the 2010 election.

Cantor won re-election to the U.S. House in 2010. During that re-election cycle, Cantor's campaign committee raised a total of $5,955,025 and spent $5,407,656.[61]


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Cantor is a "moderate Republican leader," as of July 2, 2013.[62]

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[63]

Cantor most often votes with:

Cantor least often votes with:

Lifetime voting record

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Cantor missed 350 of 8,664 roll call votes from January 2001 to April 2013. This amounts to 4.0%, which is worse than the median of 2.2% among current congressional representatives as of April 2013.[64]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Cantor paid his congressional staff a total of $1,095,474 in 2011. Overall, Virginia ranks 29th in average salary for representative staff. The average U.S. House of Representatives congressional staff was paid $954,912.20 in fiscal year 2011.[65]

Net worth

See also: Net worth of United States Senators and Representatives


Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by, Cantor's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $4,438,113 to $14,251,999. That averages to $9,345,056, which is higher than the average net worth of Republican House members in 2012 of $7,614,097.96. Cantor ranked as the 47th most wealthy representative in 2012.[66]

Eric Cantor Yearly Net Worth
YearAverage Net Worth
The data used to calculate changes in net worth may include changes resulting from assets gained through marriage, inheritance, changes in family estates and/or trusts, changes in family business ownership and many other variables unrelated to a member's behavior in Congress.

Wife's board membership compensation

Cantor's wife, Diana, receives $283,855 in compensation from her position on the boards of Domino's and Media General. In June 2013, it was announced that she was elected to the board of the cosmetics company Revlon. The chairman of Revlon, Ronald Perelman, has donated over $47,300 to Cantor's previous campaigns.[67]

National Journal vote ratings


Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Cantor was 1 of 2 members who ranked 66th in the conservative rankings in 2012.[68]


See also: National Journal vote ratings

Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Cantor ranked 73rd in the conservative rankings.[69]

Voting with party

July 2013

Cantor voted with the Republican Party 95.6% of the time, which ranked 66th among the 234 House Republican members as of July 2013.[70]


Cantor and his wife, Diana, have three children.[71]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Eric + Cantor + Virginia + House

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Eric Cantor News Feed

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See also

External links

Political Tracker has an article on:
Eric Cantor


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  27. Washington Post, "Which lawmakers will refuse their pay during the shutdown?," accessed October 3, 2013
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  29. The Hill, "Cantor, Hoyer trade blame on farm bill failure," accessed August 20, 2013
  30. Minnesota Public Radio, "Walz and Peterson on the farm bill, and more," accessed August 20, 2013
  31. The Library of Congress, "H.AMDT.136," accessed August 28, 2013
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  33. Project Vote Smart, "Representative Cantor's Voting Records on Issue: Health and Healthcare," accessed October 15, 2013
  34. The Hill, "Cantor blasts latest O-Care rules change," accessed December 20, 2013
  35. Project Vote Smart, "Cantor on abortion," accessed October 15, 2013
  36. U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff," accessed January 4, 2013
  37. Roll Call, "Eric Cantor Backs Candidate in Louisiana House Special | #LA05," accessed August 22, 2013
  38. Roll Call, "Candidates Line Up for New Special Election | The Field #LA05," accessed August 22, 2013
  39. Old Dominion Watchdog, "All five Virginia Republicans follow earmark ban," December 7, 2010
  40. Politico, "John Boehner holds fire on cocaine controversy," accessed November 20, 2013
  41. 41.0 41.1 Roll Call, "Steny Hoyer to Eric Cantor: ‘Talk Is Cheap’," accessed January 7, 2014
  42. Washington Post, "House GOP leader Eric Cantor endorses Mitt Romney," March 4, 2012
  43. Virginia Board of Elections, "2012 Primary Results"
  44. Politico, "2012 Election Map," accessed November 6, 2012
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  51., "Cantor's first ad notes contrast with president's policies," accessed April 22, 2014
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  69. National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," accessed February 23, 2012
  70. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  71. Official House website, "About Eric," accessed November 7, 2011
Political offices
Preceded by
Tom Bliley
U.S. House of Representatives - Virginia, 7th District
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Virginia House of Delegates
Succeeded by