An article about Peter Welch from Vermont appears in "The Hill"... and it helps to underscore a important fact: The national debt is ticking time bomb. The Tea Party republicans are correct in having identified this, and actually trying to work to fix it. This is a massive change for a party who, while they have paid lip service to cutting the debt, is actually largely responsible for it. (Under Reagan, the debt went from $997 billion to $2.85 trillion-- an important gift to America which we should remember whenever we are tempted to eulogize the man.)
But, of course, the Tea Party is wrong in it's approach. In it's efforts to "Free the Rich" (from taxation, from Regulation) it would actually produce stagnation...the very wealthy have no desire to be subject to market forces which might displace them...and historically, they have taken great pains to prevent the free market from working. When market forces finally do win out, we end with disasters like the Great Depression...from which recovery is all but impossible.
It's time to elect Democrats who understand that belt tightening is important if we are to survive to grow another day, AND who understand how to wage the political battles necessary to prevent the Tea Party from inadvertently cutting our throats.
From the article, it sounds as if Congressman Welch is doing a pretty good job.