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At Economist summit, Cantor predicts Republican future

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Predictions for what 2010 will bring were aplenty yesterday at The Economist’s summit in Washington celebrating the release of its World in 2010 edition.  The event featured several influential speakers who gave their two cents on issues of economic, political and cultural significance.

Among them was House Minority Whip Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va), who stressed that one of the most talked about topics of next year will be the “progress or lack thereof on the jobs front.”

Cantor, the last remaing Jewish Republican in Congress, also predicted that Democrats would lose control of the House, largely due to what he called a disconnect between the rhetoric and the actions of the White House.

“People in this country have a real sense of pessimism right now,” explained Cantor.  A “very grumpy electorate,” he feels, will oust Democrats from power.

World in 2010 editor Daniel Franklin questioned Cantor’s forecast of Republican triumph in the House, asking “do you foresee it, or do you want it?”

Franklin also asked the nature of the Republicans’ game plan. 

“What is the idea?  ‘Jobs’ is not an idea.”

Cantor rebuffed the notion that Republicans were all talk, saying that he and his colleagues had brought several ideas to the table.

“[It’s] not that sexy of a story for the media to cover our ideas,” said Cantor.

Cantor also said that if implemented in 2010, cap and trade would cut jobs. He also expressed concern that the temporary TARP funds allocated this year would prove to be slush fund.

As for future players of the Republican Party in 2010, Cantor broke into a wide smile when fellow panelist and Meet the Press host David Gregory mentioned Sarah Palin.

He was mum on the subject, but was adamant that Republican gubernatorial successes in New Jersey and Virginia were signs of things to come.

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