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Pro-Bush rally on 'Rocky's turf'
The Salt Lake Tribune
Heather May
August 29, 2006
Republicans will keep their pro-President Bush rally Wednesday at the City-County Building's Washington Square. Organizers had considered moving it to the Utah Air National Guard base so that the crowd could welcome Bush as he arrived on Air Force One. But that proved impractical. So the GOP is reverting to its original plan to show support for the president from 5:30 to 8 p.m., hours after an anti-Bush protest led by Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson gathers at Washington Square. Speakers will include top Republican political leaders, including Sen. Bob Bennett and Reps. Rob Bishop and Chris Cannon. Sen. Orrin Hatch and Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. are invited to speak. "American Idol" runner-up Carmen Rasmussen will perform. Murray Mayor Dan Snarr also is scheduled to speak. "We had so many people that have been making plans to come to [Washington Square]," said James Evans, chairman of the Salt Lake County Republican Party. "They insisted we continue with that event. This is a good problem to have." Plus, "it would just never work" logistically at the base, said Utah Republican Party Executive Director Jeff Hartley. The number of attendees would be limited, and partisan events aren't allowed on bases, Evans said. "We wanted an event that's open to everybody, that's big, fun and exciting, that everyone can come to," Hartley said. Having the rally on Washington Square, where City Hall sits, is a bonus. "We're going right to Rocky's turf," Evans said.
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