Biden warns of ‘the end of the road’ for agenda

BIDEN WARNS OF ‘THE END OF THE ROAD’ FOR AGENDA…. Vice President Biden was in Delaware yesterday, and raised a few eyebrows with a warning about next year’s midterm elections.

Vice President Joe Biden said today that if Democrats were to lose 35 House seats they currently hold in traditionally Republican districts, it would mean doomsday for President Obama’s agenda.

Biden said Republicans are pinning their political strategy on flipping these seats.

“If they take them back, this the end of the road for what Barack and I are trying to do,” the vice president said at a fundraiser for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) today in Greenville, Delaware.

Republicans would need to win 41 House seats to reclaim the majority they lost in 2006, and the GOP has its eyes on 49 districts represented by Democrats, which McCain/Palin won last year.

Biden added that a poor GOP showing next November would produce a more functional political process. “All the hidden Republicans that don’t have the courage to vote the way they want to vote because of pressure from the party,” Biden said, “it will break the dam and you will see bipartisanship.”

The RNC and a variety of conservative bloggers seemed delighted to hear about Biden’s comments, because it suggests the White House is at least aware of the possibility that the GOP could make significant gains next year. If the vice president is talking about it, that means Democrats are worried about it.

But is it really that surprising? Of course Democratic leaders are concerned about Republicans reclaiming power. The White House and its allies have a lot of work to do, cleaning up messes left from GOP rule during the Bush era, and a shift in congressional leadership would make progress impossible.

The point of Biden’s comments probably wasn’t to signal fear to rank-and-file Republicans; it was to give rank-and-file Democrats a reason to feel motivated about the midterms. There’s already an enthusiasm gap, and Biden is trying to narrow it, effectively telling Dems, “Everything we care about will come crashing down if you don’t get in the game.”