Republican National Convention
Monday, July 31, 2000

Bush Campaign Notebook


Republican stronghold delivers for Bush

By Tom O'Neill
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        BLUE ASH — Presidential candidate George W. Bush came to a Republican corner of a Republican county Sunday to, as one member of the GOP faithful put it, “definitely preach to the converted.”

        An informal survey of 100 attendees indicated 91 had decided to vote for Mr. Bush before Sunday's speech. Of those 91, not one changed his or her mind. Many said the speech strengthened their intention.

        Mr. Bush also seemed to do well with those who were undecided when they arrived, including at least five who said they were more likely to vote for Mr. Bush.

        One, Kevin Corcoran, 42, of Blue Ash, remained uncommitted.

        “They're still talking around the edges of things,” he said of the candidates. “There's no details. Like, he said, "Your Social Security is safe with me.' Well, tell me how.”

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        Those with military backgrounds — old and young — expressed an allegiance not simply to Mr. Bush, or the GOP, but to a strong defense.

        Jeff James, 32, of Green Township, who described himself as “born and raised conservative,” served nine years as an Army helicopter pilot. “It's been a long time since we've been energized by a president,” he said.

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        “Kid Power” reigned Sunday.

        Parents brought their children, many of whom turned the outfield grass at Crosley into a fun — though somewhat wet — playground, and many with small children said that even if they are too young to remember, it was worth it.

        “We took pictures of the media, the helicopters, everything,” said Mary Smithers of Mount Lookout. She and husband Terry brought sons Alex, 5, and Evan, 3, and the younger boy shook Mr. Bush's hand.

        Among older children, the ones most up on the issues were possibly Peter and Lisa Dayton's of Terrace Park. Their children are Lauren, 11, Trey, 10, and Holly, 5. “We talked about this over breakfast,” their father said.

        On why the federal government should give back to taxpayers part of the budget surplus, Lauren simply answered, “Well, because it was ours originally.”

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