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For Immediate Release
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
Vice President Cheney speaks at political rally for Barbour
COLUMBUS, Miss. -- History was made again today at Mississippi University for Women as Vice President Dick Cheney spoke from the same grounds that President William Howard Taft once addressed students 94 years ago.
Taft's visit to the campus in 1909 was described as heightening a sense of pride and patriotism before World War I. Cheney was in Columbus to support a rally, sponsored by the MUW College Republicans, for gubernatorial candidate Haley Barbour.
Hundreds turned out for the festivities on Shattuck Lawn, as the enthusiastic crowd enjoyed live music from members of the Columbus High School Band and a bluegrass band.
Before Cheney took the stage, MUW President Claudia Limbert said "Vice President Cheney we are so pleased you accepted the invitation of our MUW College Republicans and Haley Barbour to join us today. In particular we are pleased you chose MUW from among all those other places you might have selected. We think you made a wise choice."
Other stage party guests who made remarks before the vice president
were Columbus Mayor Jeffrey Rupp, Congressman Roger Wicker, MUW College
Republicans Chair Calli Turner, local insurance agent Jabari Edwards,
Republican candidate for State Senate District 17 Terry Brown and
Congressman Chip Pickering.
"It's always great to get out of Washington and share some time in the real world," Cheney added as he expressed appreciation in working with Mississippi's congressional delegation.
Following the rally, Cheney and Barbour shook hands as red, white and blue balloons were released in front of Poindexter Hall.
Turner, who was able to shake the vice president's hand said, "I was humbled at the fact that they (Barbour's campaign) chose The W. We're such a small organization. It's incredible. The preparation took up everything I had for the week."
Jason Duffey, a freshman business major from Houston, Texas, collected tickets and passed out stickers for the MUW College Republicans.
"Cheney was a powerful speaker," Duffey said. "It was really great that Haley Barbour's campaign was able to bring him here."
Senior public relations major Angellica Benjamin of Crystal Springs said, "This is something I never imagined would happen during my college experience at The W. This will not only go down in the history books for MUW, but also for the state of Mississippi and my life."
MUW student Shelley McNees sold refreshments at the W-Reps booth.
A history major from Millport, Ala., McNees said she has always been fascinated with our country's leaders.
"The president and vice president are one of my favorite things in
history and to be a part of this was amazing. I liked Cheney's comments on
our military and his views about education."
Pictures of the event can be viewed in the Public Affairs
special events gallery.
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