Monday, May 25, 2015Monday, May 25, 2015

Defeated US Congress leader Eric Cantor leaves political options open

Published on Jun 16, 2014 1:54 AM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - United States congressional leader Eric Cantor took to the airwaves on Sunday to try to rebuild his political reputation after a stunning primary election loss that has shaken the Republican Party, and refused to rule out a future run for public office.

The House of Representatives majority leader, who since 2011 has held the No. 2 job in the 435-member chamber, will step down on July 31 after losing his bid to be his party's candidate for an eighth two-year term as a congressman from Virginia.

Mr Cantor will also be forced to leave Congress at the end of this year, which would seem to end his dream of eventually becoming speaker of the House.

But on two Sunday television talk shows, Mr Cantor left open the door to rekindling his political career sometime in the future and defended his work as majority leader. "I want to take what I've been doing here... and be able to really look towards the future so I can really continue to promote and be a champion for the conservative cause," Mr Cantor said in an interview on ABC's This Week. "I do want to play a role in the public debate," he said.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!