I see Dave Bratt as signalling two big things: (1) Republicans will solidify their image as anti-Hispanic over the next couple of years, making it harder for them to win national elections (especially in the 2020s); and (2) Hillary has a big problem: she’s too cozy with the rich. Cantor’s fate could be hers.
Put another way, Bratt’s election signals that the populist, Tea Party Republican’s passion over the next couple of election cycles will be centered around freeloading. Not just the freeloading of the poor and illegal immigrants, but the freeloading of crony capitalists and non-patriotic international capitalists (for example, the Wall Street “banksters”). Middle class whites are furious with all forms of what they perceive as freeloading, and anxious about don’t-pay-as-you-go behavior. And this anger and anxiety bleeds over into the psyches of independents and Democrats as well (though they are less likely to express them openly). Left-wing resentment toward the crony/internationalist hyper-rich is mating with right-wing resentment of the poor, the brown, the immigrant. That’s what Dave Bratt signals. Nationally, it suggests that a Rand Paul or Ted Cruz battle with Hillary Clinton for the presidency in 2016 could be a closer contest than we might now imagine.