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Raul Labrador to Run for House Majority Leader

U.S. Congress(WASHINGTON) -- House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy has some new competition for Eric Cantor's top spot: Idaho Republican Raul Labrador.

Labrador, a Tea Party favorite, is running for House Majority Leader, the lawmaker announced Friday.

"I was stunned when Eric Cantor lost his primary election earlier this week," Labrador said in a statement. "Eric is a good friend and I have tremendous respect for him.  But the message from Tuesday is clear – Americans are looking for a change in the status quo."

The announcement comes a day after Texas Rep. Pete Sessions dropped out of the race, clearing the way for California Republican McCarthy.

"I want a House Leadership team that reflects the best of our conference.  A leadership team that can bring the Republican conference together. A leadership team that can help unite and grow our party," Labrador added. "Americans don’t believe their leaders in Washington are listening and now is the time to change that."

The Idaho lawmaker called on Republicans to take on challenges with "new leadership" and a different approach, rallying the party around the idea that "President Obama and the Democrats have had their chance and they have failed."

Born to a single mother in Puerto Rico, Labrador moved to the mainland at age 13. He became one of the 87 freshman Republicans elected to Congress in 2010.

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