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Thursday, February 02, 2006

From the Trail -- Week of January 30th

Monday, January 30

Met with the Republican Central Committee of Henry County at the Farm Bureau building in Cambridge.
WONDERFUL meeting--very ably conducted by Chairman Jan Weber. Two things impressed me: the spirited discussion of the political scene, and ways to impact it ("all politics is local"); and the friendly inclusiveness. But wait, make that THREE things: at their prior meeting, a straw poll gave me a unanimous vote for the nomination to Congress for the 17th District. I am encouraged and grateful that I continue to earn that confidence...

Tuesday January 31

We held a State of the Union get-together in Macomb to watch President Bush's speech.
Food and friends (among them Gretchen DeJaynes, running for McDonough County clerk and the WIU College Republicans, whose input and thoughts added much to the discussion).

I liked these comments from the President: "The State of the Union is strong" (because, you know, it is and we must never forget that)."We love our freedom and we will fight to keep it." No terrorist attacks on our soil SINCE 9/11...another vitally important point to remember. "Human life is a gift from our Creator." And, "A life of personal responsibility is a life of fulfillment." Words to live by.

We could talk here at length about his proposals for, as he put it, a decent, hopeful, compassionate people.

On the economic front, the President called again for making tax cuts permanent. Tax cuts are working: that's the bottom line. This is also central to my own message as I run for Congress and to represent you in the 17th. The bald truth is that Lane Evans has never been a friend of the middle-class taxpayer.

Wednesday February 1

Breakfast at Student Prince in Macomb.
Meet and greet--always a pleasure to hear what's on people's minds, and while I'm at it, congratulations to Jeanna Montgomery from Macomb--Richard Stevens from Monmouth--and Justin Ogle from Moline: all will be attending the National Special Olympics in Ames Iowa in July. We know they'll represent us well!

I do love visiting the District. It's as simple as that.

Went to the Old Dairy (which I remember as the Macomb Dairy, since I grew up here--our school took a field trip and I remember shiny stainless steel and impressive machines). Times change--now it's a lunch and coffee house, set upu for wireless Internet and dotted with people hunched over laptops.

But women I know began to walk in the door, here for the Macomb Women's Club meeting. And then, a young woman from up north, stopping by to ask directions to the hospital. She saw me and her eyes lighted up because, recognizing me from TV, she considered me the natural person of whom to ask directions to McDonough District Hospital. You know, no matter how many times that happens it's a good feeiling. Turned out her grandmother is from Rock Island and plans to vote for me.

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