Republican Cantor to leave leading U.S. House post after election shock

Cantor and Boehner hold a news conference after a Republican Party caucus meeting on Capitol Hill in WashingtonBy Richard Cowan and Gabriel Debenedetti WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader Eric Cantor plans to step down as the No. 2 House Republican after a shock election defeat to a Tea Party movement upstart that set off an unexpected scramble for new leadership. A House Republican aide confirmed that Cantor plans to leave his leadership post. Republicans were scheduled to meet at 4 p.m. EDT after Cantor was defeated on Tuesday in a primary race in his Virginia district by a political rookie backed by the conservative Tea Party. In his campaign against Cantor, college economics professor David Brat accused Cantor of being too willing to compromise with Democrats on immigration and budget issues and of not fighting hard enough against President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law known as Obamacare.

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