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Christian Coalition Backing Bush

August 1, 2000

PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Playing a quieter role in this year’s Republican National Convention, the Christian Coalition was far from silent Tuesday at a rally for delegates and their friends.

``I’m so amused when I read these articles that say, ’The Christian Coalition is dead. The religious right is dead,‴ founder Pat Robertson told about 1,000 members.

``I tell you, they ought to put out a story to the fire department here that the largest ballroom in the Marriott Hotel is jam packed with corpses,″ he said.

Volunteers walked the edges of the room distributing white vests stamped with ``The LIFE of the party″ on the back as Robertson and other speakers _ mainly governors and federal lawmakers _ spoke during the rally touted as ``THE pro-family event″ of the week.

``This is as big as the convention itself. Isn’t it marvelous?″ said Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating.

Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said he was warned by aides about the risks of speaking and being affiliated with the Coalition.

``You dear people have always been willing to identify with me and I’m very happy to identify with you,″ he said before encouraging the audience to do everything possible to elect a candidate ``unapologetically pro-life.″

Robertson said his organization plans to distribute 75 million voter guides, establish voter registration drives and mobilize and activate churches to help elect Republican George W. Bush as president.

``We’re just warming up folks because we’ve got a lot do to,″ he said.

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