This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
>Is Vice President Joe Biden speaking at the Republican National Convention? Well, no, but Texas Senate candidate Ted Cruz, a tea party darling, wishes that was the case.
Cruz, who was supported by Utah Sen. Mike Lee in the Texas primary, joked with the Utah delegation at the GOP confab that convention officials had shaken up the schedule once again to add a new keynote speaker.
"Joe Biden will be speaking at this convention," Cruz said to a slightly bewildered Utah crowd. "Because you know, every time Joe Biden opens his mouth, he gets Republican votes."
Cruz, of course, was referring to Biden's uncanny ability to throw out a comment that riles up the Republican base and prompts plenty of news coverage.
The Texas Republican, who is expected to become the state's new senator, told the Utah delegates and guests during their morning breakfast that the country owes them a debt for sending Lee to the Senate, noting Lee has reminded them of the body of its constitutional duty.
"He has his colleagues asking, 'Where is that found in the constitution,'" Cruz said. "That's exactly what we need to turn our country around."
If elected to the Senate, Cruz is likely to join ranks with Lee, Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina and a handful of other senators to push ideas spawned by the tea party. And Cruz says that's a key voting bloc to have.
"Every battle is going to be fought in the Senate," Cruz said. "The Senate is really the tipping point."