A crowd of six-thousand greeted President Bush when he arrived for a rally at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines this afternoon. “I want to thank those of you who’ve been putting up the signs, making the phone calls. I want to thank you for all the work you’ve done over the past year to get ready for tomorrow,” Bush said. Jenna and Barbara Bush, the president’s sister Dorothy and a sister-in-law spoke and the country band headed by John Stone played as the crowd waited for three hours for the President’s appearance. Republican operatives say G-O-P volunteers made 600-thousand personal contacts in Iowa over the past three days by phone or from the front doorstep. Iowa Democrats have had a paid staff of four-hundred going door-to-door since April, and Democrat leaders say they’ve knocked on nearly a million doors, urging folks to register to vote. Bush lost Iowa to Al Gore in 2000 by four-thousand votes, and if public opinion polls are to be believed, the Bush/Kerry is just as tight in Iowa. “I want to thank you for all you’ve done and what you’re going to do over the next 24 hours,” Bush said. “With you help, with your hard work, by turning out this vote there is no doubt in my mind we will carry Iowa and win a great victory on Tuesday.” Bush officially launched his first bid for the White House with a trip to Iowa in June of 1999 aboard a plane dubbed “Great Expectations.” Today, Air Force One touched down in Des Moines and then Sioux City on a final Bush push before Election Day in key states. “I really enjoyed campaigning in your state in 2000 and now in 2004, and I’m here one more time asking for your vote and asking for your help,” Bush said.
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