It is nothing less than astounding that House GOP Whip Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyPelosi blasts California Republicans for supporting tax bill Lawmakers, celebs honor Tony Bennett with Library of Congress Gershwin Prize Pete King rips White House budget chief for trying to ‘screw’ NY MORE (Calif.) collected enough votes overnight to replace Rep. Eric CantorEric CantorIf we want to make immigration great again, let's make it bipartisan Top Lobbyists 2017: Hired Guns GOP Rep. Jeb Hensarling to retire after end of current term MORE (Va.) as majority leader, following Cantor's shocking loss to his primary opponent Tuesday. Certainly not because McCarthy hadn't earned that foundation of support from the conference already but that the loud and proud voices of angry conservatives once again added up to, well, too few votes. The problem plaguing the most conservative wing of the Republican Party — call it the Tea Party of whatever — has always been the lack of votes. Defunding ObamaCare, ousting Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerTrump's pick for Federal Reserve chief is right choice at right time The two-party system is dying — let’s put it out of its misery One year later, neither party can get past last year's election MORE (Ohio), beating McCarthy — it's always the same: not enough votes.

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Uprisings come and go, and Dave Brat's ability to wipe out a majority leader with only 5 percent of the votes from Virginia's 7th District is as stunning and historic as upsets can be, but until this fervent movement wins enough elections, a movement is what it will remain. Despite the GOP establishment's intense — and successful — pushback in primary elections this year, conservatives rejoiced after Brat's win Tuesday, issuing threats to topple the blue and swing-state leaders who have controlled the conference now for years. Leaders from Ohio, Virginia and California — what do they know about the country? But Rep. Jeb HensarlingThomas (Jeb) Jeb HensarlingGOP eager for Trump shake-up at consumer bureau Trump considering Mulvaney to be interim CFPB head: report Overnight Regulation: Consumer chief resigning | DOJ issues warning on ‘sanctuary city’ policies | Panel votes to approve drilling in Arctic refuge MORE (Texas) took a pass, then after declaring himself a candidate, Rep. Pete SessionsPeter Anderson SessionsGOP rep: Funding bill could include Trump's border wall GOP fights off primary challengers in deep-red Texas Sessions to run for majority whip MORE (Texas) took a pass and a new push by Rep. Raul LabradorRaul Rafael LabradorOur immigration courts are drowning, expedited removal can bring relief Raúl Labrador to run for Idaho governor A real Hamiltonian response for Puerto Rico MORE (Idaho) will surely go the way the other challenges did. McCarthy has the votes already. Why? Because so many Tea Party-backed conservatives support him. There aren't enough of them to land a blow — period.

While Republicans everywhere battle over this poll or that showing that immigration did or did not end Cantor's congressional career, Labrador — a reform proponent who has worked with Democrats to get it passed this session — has declared reform dead. All that matters is that conservatives are blaming "amnesty" for the loss, even if it isn't the culprit. It is a powerful weapon that will be used again and again to scare Republicans away from reform, furthering fueling the Tea Party and the conservative grass roots but keeping the party as a whole from winning the White House again. Why? Without reform there won't be enough votes.

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