Vice President Joe Biden is calling Democrats to action to stop grassroots conservatives from electing more Republicans in the mold of Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rand Paul (R-KY).
In a fundraising letter for the Democratic National Committee, first reported by Ed Krayewski at Reason, Biden wrote told prospective donors that a “group of freshmen senators are running the show in the Republican Party” and played up the possibility of a government shutdown over ObamaCare.
“Now these aren’t bad guys, but I want you to think about this: not only are they still trying to get rid of health care reform — they’re willing to use the entire federal government as a bargaining chip to get it done,” wrote Biden. “That’s what we’re dealing with in Washington right now, and it’s unprecedented in my lifetime.”
“Make no mistake — one thing we don’t need is to let the Republicans outrun us in 2014, and elect a bunch more people to the House and Senate who think, act, and vote the way Ted Cruz and Rand Paul do,” he added.
Biden’s comments are practically identical to a speech he gave during a recent fundraiser in Massachusetts in which he asked the crowd, “Have you ever seen a time when two freshman senators are able to cower the bulk of the Republican Party in the Senate?”
While already notable players given how they won tough primaries against establishment-backed candidates, Paul, Cruz, and Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) have emerged as the conscience of the Republican Party in the Senate, principled conservatives who are willing to take stands when leaders would prefer they toe the party-line.
This conservative trio has really upset the power structure in Washington. The Senate has always been a place that operates on tradition and consensus, but Cruz, Paul, and Lee have brought a much needed grassroots flair to the chamber that threatened the status quo preferred by Democrats and Republicans alike.
Biden may be the person saying it, but that sentiment is probably shared by many Republicans in the Senate and establishment talking heads.