Republicans respond to Democrat’s visit, rally

As state Rep. Steve King said Sunday, it’s “crunch time.”

King, R-Grand Junction, was one of nearly 150 Republican officials and supporters who gathered for an impromptu rally in Sherwood Park on Sunday. Mesa County Republican Party Chairman Gary Roahrig scheduled the rally in response to the scheduled visit today by Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.

Roahrig sent an e-mail Thursday night encouraging Mesa County Republicans to show up at Sherwood Park on Sunday in support of Republican presidential hopeful John McCain and vice presidential running mate Sarah Palin.

Attendees also discussed how to distribute information about the Republican ticket to the general public in the weeks ahead.

“We can’t underestimate the power of all they can accomplish for this nation,” Roahrig said of McCain and Palin.

“They are a Western ticket with Western beliefs and Western values.”

State Sen. Josh Penry, R-Grand Junction, said he had been given “strong assurances” from Republican officials that McCain or Palin would be coming to Mesa County before the election.

“I think it’s indicative of the emotion and passion surrounding the McCain/Palin ticket,” Penry said.

During Sunday’s rally, Robbie Koos, co-owner of Glacier Ice Arena, stood up to say she was proud to be a small business owner and “hardworking, middle-class hockey mom” voting for McCain and Palin.

Mesa County Republican Party members handed out bumper stickers and signs Sunday as they attempt to get their presidential, congressional and State School Board nominees elected.

Roahrig said he has “never” seen a presidential election with more interest, enthusiasm and energy, “or one more important,” he said.


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