Cantor: 'It Doesn't Have to Be a Bad Day'

Confirms he's leaving, won't launch a write-in campaign

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Jun 11, 2014 4:57 PM CDT

(Newser) – Eric Cantor confirmed this afternoon that he won't be launching a long-shot bid to remain in Congress with a write-in candidacy in Virginia's general election. He told his GOP colleagues behind closed doors that he will serve out his term but will step down as majority leader at the end of next month. “It doesn't have to be a bad day," he said at the GOP meeting, reports Politico. "Suffering is part of life, misery is a choice." He reiterated his decision at a news conference later, reports the Washington Post. “While I may have suffered a personal setback last night, I couldn’t be more optimistic about the future of this country,” Cantor said.

So what's next for him? "That's probably between my wife and me," he said. Meanwhile, the House will have elections to pick a new majority leader on June 19, with the leading candidates being majority whip Kevin McCarthy of California and Pete Sessions of Texas. Sessions may have rankled colleagues by waiting only 20 minutes after Cantor's defeat was announced to start pushing his own candidacy, reports the Hill. (Click to read about the candidate who stunned Cantor in the primary, David Bratt.)

Following his defeat in the Virginia primary Tuesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., tells reporters he intends to resign his leadership post at the end of July.
Following his defeat in the Virginia primary Tuesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., tells reporters he intends to resign his leadership post at the end of July.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Following his defeat in the Virginia primary Tuesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., tells reporters he intends to resign his leadership post at the end of July.
Following his defeat in the Virginia primary Tuesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., tells reporters he intends to resign his leadership post at the end of July.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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