Cruz: Tea Party a 'modern force for good'

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Thursday praised the Tea Party for its work over the last five years, and said Tea Party activists are a throwback to early Americans who helped throw off British rule.

"It was this same revolutionary resolve that spurred the colonists to stand against 'taxation without representation,' that resulted in the adoption of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and that has inspired millions to continue defending our freedoms ever since," Cruz wrote in a Thursday letter.

"Thank you for your tireless efforts to keep the American Dream alive."

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Cruz posted his letter on his website Thursday, which marked the five-year anniversary of the Tea Party. He also disputed the idea that the Tea Party has outlived its usefulness.

"Indeed, reports of the demise of the Tea Party have been greatly exaggerated," he wrote. "It has been five years since the Tea Party burst upon the political scene, and it remains alive and kicking much to the chagrin of the Washington establishment."

Cruz said the Tea Party organized to fight government bailouts, rising government debt and the "prospect of a government takeover of our healthcare system." But he said the Tea Party has more issues to fight.

"Whether it comes to demanding accountability for the IRS's illegal targeting program, an out-of-control government spying program, the government's use of drones, or the deaths of our countrymen in Benghazi, the Tea Party stands at the ready to protect their fellow citizens."