05/04/2013 08:51 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Biden South Carolina Speech Slams Republicans, Touts Voting Rights

Vice President Joe Biden delivered some harsh rhetoric against Republicans during a speech in South Carolina on Friday night.

Speaking at a dinner hosted by the South Carolina Democratic Party, Biden said "One of the things that bothers me most about the new Republican party is how down on America they are, how down on our prospects they are, how they talk about how we're getting clobbered, how they talk about things that have no relationship to reality, all in the name of making sure that the very few at the top do very well. They're not bad guys. They actually believe it."

Biden also made impassioned pleas for voting rights and immigration reform, as Politico notes.

Quoting an elderly woman who waited in line for hours to vote last November, he said, "'I tell you what, I didn't fight this hard, this long, for anybody to deny me the right to vote."

Watch a clip from the speech above.

Meanwhile, close by, Texas Senator Ted Cruz was giving a speech at a state Republican party dinner.

His speech, on the heels of this weekend's NRA convention in Texas, criticized President Obama's gun control agenda. He also took a shot at the Vice President.

"So Vice President Joe Biden's in town," he said. "You know the great thing is, you don't even need a punch line. You just say that and people laugh."

The two competing speeches fueled plenty of 2016 speculation. South Carolina is the first state to vote in the primary elections and is considered a vital stop for presidential hopefuls.

Watch a clip from Cruz's speech below.



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