WASHINGTON, April 8, 2014 – For anyone who follows politics, “House of Cards” (NetFlix) is a guilty pleasures. Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) maybe the best fictional politician ever put on TV and going into the third season he has risen from Speaker of the House to… well, we won’t spoil it for you. And if you haven’t watched the show, you may not want to watch the following trailer.
Underwood is smooth, subtle and ruthless.
In Washington, there is a man who would be Frank Underwood. He is the man who would be Speaker of the House. He is Eric Cantor (R-Va and House Majority Leader). Unfortunately, he is neither smooth nor subtle.
Whether he is ruthless is debatable.
It is an open secret in Washington that Cantor wants the job. Speculation has also been running wild for the last few months that House Speaker John Boehner will not be staying on as Speaker. Some reports indicate that if the Republicans do not take the Senate, Boehner will step down. Others say, even if the Republicans take the Senate, he will not be around long.
Boehner is playing his cards close to his chest and not saying one way or another.
Cantor is trying to do his best Frank Underwood imitation with his efforts to ice his competition. Conservatives may not be happy with Boehner as Speaker. Conservatives are absolutely apoplectic at the possibility of Eric Cantor succeeding Boehner.
Only Conservatives have not coalesced around anyone candidate should Boehner steps down,. The most likely candidate is Texas Congressman Jeb Hensarling. Eric Cantor has been doing everything he can to take down Hensarling.
According to published reports, Cantor has worked with Democrats to shut down every policy initiative Hensarling is pushing. For conservatives, it should be alarming that a Republican has such a naked lust for power.
Hensarling is not Cantor’s only threat. He is facing a primary challenge from conservative college professor Dave Brat. Cantor is pretending to ignore Brat, while surrogates try to paint Brat as a liberal.
That is amusing coming from the guy who has tried to figure out the most creative ways to allow meaningless votes on repealing Obamacare.
For conservatives, Cantor as Speaker is a nightmare scenario because of amnesty. Boehner is generally for amnesty but has not pushed the issue. Cantor is strongly for amnesty and is willing to push the issue. While Boehner has not been willing to engage in the fight necessary to try and get amnesty passed, Cantor is quite willing to have that fight.
That fight is the proverbial no-win scenario. If Cantor pushes the fight, at best it rips the GOP further apart. At worst, amnesty is passed. Since surveys of illegal aliens show they favor Democrats eight to one over Republicans, that is a fast way to add millions of new Democrat voters and make the Republican Party a permanent minority.
The best way to ensure that Eric Cantor is never the Speaker of the House is for Dave Brat to defeat him in the Republican Primary in June.
Conservatives have two shots at Cantor. The first is defeating him and replacing him with a conservative. The second is blocking him from becoming Speaker of the House.
If both of those opportunities are lost, the Republican Party is doomed.
Frank Underwood is ruthless but effective. In House of Cards, he gets things done even if his methods ranged from questionable to morally, or legally, wrong. Eric Cantor possesses none of those qualities.
Thanks to Netflix, millions of Americans know Frank Underwood. Eric Cantor, you are no Frank Underwood.