Special/Signature Issues » 2012 Power List

5. U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor (=)


For some, Cantor remains Henrico County's favorite son, but not for everybody. A late-July poll shows the congressman's approval rating at a waterlogged 30 percent. Part of that is lingering fallout from the public's disgust with the Capitol Hill inaction and partisanship that Cantor helped stage manage. Despite a fawning CBS profile about him (he actually likes rap music!), Cantor can't avoid coming off as "the Eddie Haskell of American politics," as Washington Monthly describes him. Still, the House majority leader wields considerable clout as head of its conservative wing. He remains the biggest thing Virginia has going in national politics. Will it last after the November elections?

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