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The Party Of Jefferson Attacks Ken Cuccinelli For Being Jeffersonian

Ken Cuccinelli
Vice President Joe Biden is the latest in a series of high-profile Democratic Party insiders to make the trek to Virginia to attack Republican Ken Cuccinelli and raise money for the ultimate Democratic insider, Clinton-confidant and now Virginia’s Democratic candidate for Governor, Terry McAuliffe.

Except Biden added his own “Bidenesque” flavor to the vitriol by attacking Cuccinelli for inspiring grassroots limited government constitutional conservatives and Tea Partiers to hew to the principles of Democratic Party founder Thomas Jefferson.

“This is about as stark a choice as you could imagine — a choice between the Virginia way and the tea party way,” Biden said in his keynote speech at last week’s Jefferson – Jackson Day fundraiser in Richmond.

Which got us to thinking, what exactly is the “Tea Party” way?

Tea Partiers are a very diverse lot – some have libertarian tendencies, some have one foot in the social conservative movement, others focus on government spending and taxation.

However, what seems to unite all Tea Partiers is a desire to hold the federal government strictly within its constitutional limits.

There is an aphorism, often attributed to Thomas Jefferson that says, "When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.”

We couldn’t find a source substantiating those words being used by Jefferson, but it would be hard to sum-up the Tea Party credo better than Jefferson did in his first inaugural address when he said:

“…a wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicities.”

Of course with a $16+ trillion debt and 11,327 pages of new federal regulations added in its first term, frugality and leaving people “free to regulate their own pursuits” is not what the Obama – Biden administration is all about.

Fighting federal regulations that grow federal spending and intrude into the constitutional powers reserved to the states or retained by the people is how Ken Cuccinelli rose to national prominence as Virginia’s Attorney General and why grassroots conservatives support him so strongly.

It seems to us that for the better part of 70 years the Democratic Party of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Lyndon Baines Johnson, Barack Obama – and yes, Joe Biden – has been committed to turning on its head Jefferson’s dictum about what constitutes wise government.

If Virginia’s grassroots Democratic Party voters take their Jeffersonian principles seriously, then they would have to conclude that it is the Tea Party and limited government constitutional conservatives, like Ken Cuccinelli, that are finally turning the ship of state back toward the “Virginia way” first articulated by Thomas Jefferson.

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