QUOTE OF THE DAY…. Following up on the last item, scandal-plagued Sen. David Vitter (R) of Louisiana came out of hiding today to formally file his re-election documents. There were a few difficulties when reporters began asking the senator some of the questions he’s been avoiding.

But I was also intrigued by a campaign email Vitter sent to supporters this afternoon, around the time of the filing. Most of it is pretty boilerplate, but this portion stood out for me.

“The big government, big spending left crowd is wounded and scared. That’s why they are doing everything they can to get their loyalists elected.

“As all of you know, I’m certainly not one of those loyalists. In fact, one of my greatest strengths has been as a fighter for Louisiana families. And it’s clear that that fighting spirit and effectiveness is needed now more than ever.

President Obama and his allies are out to steal our country. And the question for every candidate this year is: whose side are you on?” [emphasis added]

Putting aside the obvious cracks about Vitter fighting for “Louisiana families” — when a right-wing senator caught with prostitutes mentions the importance of families, he’s asking for trouble — it was disconcerting to see a sitting senator suggest the president and his supporters are trying to “steal our country.”

Who gets to be included in Vitter’s “our”? Who does Vitter think the country is being stolen from, exactly?

These need not be considered rhetorical questions. The duly-elected president and the duly-elected Congress are trying to implement the policy agenda they promised voters to pursue. Vitter can disagree, and he can even engage in scandalous and unprecedented obstructionism to prevent the majority from governing during a crisis, but how does he arrive at the conclusion that America’s elected leadership is trying to “steal our country”?

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.