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Pro-Gore, Pro-Bush Protester Rally

November 12, 2000

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ Hoisting witty signs and chanting through bull horns, about 500 demonstrators argued both sides of the presidential election standoff outside the Texas Governor’s Mansion and the Capitol.

As friction thickened between the two sides Saturday, Department of Public Safety officers worked to keep the protest peaceful and the demonstrators out of the streets.

A chanting line of Bush/Cheney supporters circling the Governor’s Mansion increased their volume when near pro-Gore demonstrators. One pro-Bush marcher shoved his bull horn in the face of a foe, blaring his message: ``Who won? Bush won!″

``They’re super aggressive,″ Penny Van Horn, 45, said of those demonstrating for Bush. ``They would love to get in a fist fight. I just want my voice to be heard.″

Holding up a sign that read ``Don’t get Snippy. Americans want a fair election,″ Van Horn said the voting problems in Florida should be addressed before a president is named.

``I really don’t care who wins, I ’ll be happy as long as this is treated fairly,″ she said.

Julian Calero, 23, was shouting ``Every vote counts″ from a loud speaker while holding a sign that read, ``Revote or Revolt!″ Calero said the easiest way to resolve the election dispute is to have a runoff election.

Bush supporters became a fixture outside his mansion after Tuesday’s presidential election was deemed too close to call.

Republican Andy Rebber passed by a dog clad with a pro-Gore sign and mumbled, ``I bet that dog could figure out that ballot.″

Rebber, 32, said the election fiasco is damaging global perceptions of the United States.

``They’re making us look like a banana republic,″ Rebber said of the Democrats. ``All the Republicans are trying to do is what’s good for the country. We are the bedrock of democracy. This stuff happens in Serbia, not in the U.S.″

Stay-at-home mom Kerry Hardy brought her husband and her two children, one in a stroller, to speak up for Bush and what she believes is his Constitutional right to be president.

``Support the process, support the Constitution,″ said Hardy, 31. ``You can’t just keep recounting until you get the results you like. ... It’s Veterans Day and my uncle died protecting the Constitution. This is something I had to do to honor his memory.″

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