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Cheney stumps for GOP in Corydon

Cheney stumps for GOP in Corydon
Cheney stumps for GOP in Corydon
Vice President Dick Cheney's wife, Lynne, speaks to GOP faithful Thursday in Corydon. Cheney asked for their continued support at the ballot box. (Photo by Chris Adams)

Vice President Dick Cheney’s wife was in Harrison County last week to ask for continued support of the GOP party and talk about problems facing the United States.
Lynne Cheney, guest speaker at Thursday night’s 68th annual Lincoln Day Banquet, made reference to ‘the great governor,’ the ‘fine state representatives’ and the ‘very effective Congressmen’ representing the Hoosier state.
‘And I know I’m not bringing you any news, but it’s important to see each and every one of them reelected,’ said Cheney.
And after praising President George W. Bush, she added, ‘If you don’t mind me saying so, the vice president is no slouch either.’
Cheney has been married to her high school sweetheart, who is now the 46th Vice President of the United States, since 1964.
Nearly 300 Republicans attended the banquet, held at Old Capitol United Methodist Church in Corydon. Most were Harrison Countians with a scattering of supporters from nearby counties.
Security was tight for the event. Four school buses formed a wall outside one of the church’s entrances, and bomb-sniffing dogs and Secret Service personnel had earlier searched the premises. Those attending the banquet, which was a fund-raiser for the Harrison County Central Republican Committee, had to show a photo ID and pass through a metal detector. Tickets had to be purchased in advance.
Indiana Auditor of State Connie Nass introduced the vice president’s wife as someone ‘who’s loved history since she was a little girl.’ She named several of the books that Cheney had either written or co-authored. Several of the works are for children.
Cheney, who stands slightly under five-foot-two, stood on a small step stool behind the podium that had a dark blue backdrop flanked by the American flag on her right and the Indiana state flag on her left. She wore a black suit and spoke for about 20 minutes.
‘What a beautiful day to be in Indiana,’ she said to a welcoming round of applause. ‘I guess every day is a beautiful day to be in Indiana.’
Before talking about many things, including war, natural disasters and the economy, Cheney told the audience that she loves the cows she saw as she arrived at the church on Heidelberg Road.
Cheney spoke of how ‘God must have watched over America’ during the Civil War, when 600,000 Americans ‘died at the hands of each other.’
And of the current war with Iraq, Cheney said Americans ‘should recognize the progress we’ve made … We’ve been there helping.’
Despite the violence, corruption and death that come with war, ‘the fine men and women’ in the U.S. military ‘ ‘the greatest military the world has ever known’ ‘ are battling against terrorism.
‘This doesn’t mean waving the white flag when the going gets tough,’ Cheney said.
She said some day Americans will be able to tell their children and grandchildren how the United States made the world safe, ‘how we fought the terrorists overseas so we didn’t have to fight them at home.’
She also talked about the natural disasters the United States has faced recently, including the hurricanes that devastated the southern Gulf states last summer. ‘We should be proud of the way we came through them,’ she said.
And though the U.S. economy experienced a recession following 9/11, Cheney said ‘the country still grew faster than any other industrialized nation.’ Tax cuts issued by Bush returned $800 billion to small business owners.
‘Those tax cuts will expire in a few years,’ Cheney said. ‘The President needs the support of all to make the Bush tax cuts permanent.
‘That’s especially important in Indiana where farmers and small businesses want to pass (their legacy) on to family,’ she said.
Cheney mentioned family several times, including how she has roots in Vigo County, along the Indiana-Illinois state line. She also referred to her three granddaughters and one grandson (another grandson is on the way) and told how one of the granddaughters had called her the ‘Grandma of the United States.’
‘There’s no title better in the world,’ Cheney said.
When Cheney was finished speaking, she was whisked away from Corydon, and the crowd at the Republican banquet thinned out. Several attendees said they needed fresh air after being in the tightly secured building for more than an hour.
Nass returned to the podium following the meal and spoke briefly about immigration and protecting the U.S. borders. She also said she had the opportunity to talk with Indiana Ninth District Congressman Mike Sodrel after he returned from a trip to Afghanistan. It was interesting to learn details of how the troops truly are helping people in that country, she said.
A former mayor of Huntingburg, Nass is completing her second four-year term as state auditor.
Larry Shickles, chairman of the Harrison County Republican party, introduced the rest of the county officers and recognized candidates in this year’s election. Of Cheney’s appearance at the Lincoln Day Banquet, he said, ‘We will always remember this visit.’
The Rev. Doug Finney, pastor at Old Capitol UMC, gave the invocation. He had just returned the night before from Harrison County, Miss., where he was working with a hurricane disaster team.