House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has told Rep. Vance McAllister he ought to resign, a day after the first-term congressman said he won’t seek re-election after he was caught on surveillance tape kissing a member of his staff who wasn’t his wife.
“I’m not going to leave my district voiceless for the second time in one term,” the Louisiana Republican told reporters off the House floor.
Cantor, in a meeting that the majority leader from Virginia requested, told McAllister he expects a higher standard of behavior, that his behavior hadn’t met that standard and that McAllister should resign.
McAllister said that’s not the whole story.
“He asked me why I would want to put myself through this for the next eight months if I’m not running for reelection,” McAllister said in a statement — he told reporters basically the same thing off the floor too. Cantor “did ask me to consider resigning, but I respectfully disagree with him, and my family is behind my decision.”
He added this: “My district deserves a voice and a fair election process, not an expensive potential special election that benefits the establishment.”
It’s worth noting something in all of this that McAllister knows full well: He was never the first choice of party big shots who are now calling on him to quit. He ran second in a massive primary election, then won a runoff to win his seat.
All almost anyone in Washington knew about him is that he said he’d never been here — but the guys from Duck Dynasty had endorsed him.
They didn’t want him here in the first place.
Then Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and the state’s party chairman told McAllister to quit earlier this month.
Now they can’t get rid of him.