Eric Cantor, the former Virginia Republican congressman and House majority leader, is starting a new job on Wall Street.
Cantor will join Moelis & Company as vice chairman and managing director. He is also expected to be elected to the Moelis board of directors, the firm said in a press release Tuesday. He stepped down from Congress in mid-August to give his successor seniority, following his resignation as House majority leader in July.
Cantor unexpectedly lost his primary to tea party challenger Dave Brat, a largely unknown college professor who was outspent 26-to-1 by Cantor and wasn't thought to be a risk until election night, when he defeated Cantor by a surprising margin. Brat hit Cantor hard on his support for immigration reform and, at times, his coziness with Wall Street.
Ken Moelis, the chairman and CEO of the Wall Street firm, celebrated Cantor as a “proven … pro-business advocate."
Indeed, Cantor was popular on Wall Street while in Congress. Donors from the financial industry have forked over big bucks for Cantor (he raised $1.8 million in 2014 alone). In turn, Cantor became one of Wall Street’s favorite members — serving on the House Financial Services Committee and learning the intricacies of financial policy, fighting to lower taxes on private-equity managers and limit disclosures.
Cantor spent his final day in Congress in Manhattan, where Moelis is headquartered. Cantor will open a Washington office for Moelis, a small firm that advises clients on mergers, acquisitions and risk.
“When I considered options for the next chapter of my career, I knew I wanted to join a firm with a great entrepreneurial spirit that focused on its clients,” Cantor said in a statement.