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Eye On Boise

Mon., Aug. 22, 2005, 2:49 p.m.

Getting into the act

What with President Bush in Idaho, folks of all political stripes are getting into the act – from a “Potatoes for Peace” performance at an anti-war rally planned for Tuesday evening across from the state capitol, to an announcement from Trout Unlimited that the president will be fishing with Gov. Dirk Kempthorne, illustrating “how important roadless lands are to Idaho’s wild fish and to Idaho anglers,” to the president’s own rally Wednesday for the troops and their families in Nampa, his only planned public appearance during his visit to Idaho. The president is planning to give a speech on the war on terror at the Wednesday rally.

At the Tuesday evening anti-war rally, organizers say “Potatoes for Peace” will give their debut performance. So what are they? Apparently they’re five folks in spud costumes who sing. Here’s a sample from their song script:

“We’re Idaho potatoes and we’re here to say, George Bush, you must end this war today. Bring allll our troops back home to I-daho, So they can all eat a baked po-tay-to.”

The Idaho Peace Coalition, sponsor of the rally, also will hold a memorial for Iraq war casualties Tuesday at noon at Capitol Park in Boise.

Trout Unlimited western field coordinator Scott Stouder, who is based in Riggins, said his group read in the Washington Post that the president would be fishing for wild trout with Kempthorne and bicycling in Donnelly today and tomorrow – and that means he’d be benefiting from Idaho’s roadless areas. “Any wild trout that he catches will either have been born in a roadless area or in water supplied by a roadless area,” Stouder said. “Frankly, I don’t know if he realizes that or not.”

Stouder said Trout Unlimited is thrilled that Bush will fish for wild trout, rather than just, say, sit in Boise and eat potatoes. “The fact that he’s coming to Idaho and recognizes this irreplaceable value of wild fish habitat is really important to us.”

Kempthorne attended the president’s speech in Salt Lake City this morning, then flew with the president into Gowen Field in Boise, landing around 1:30 p.m. today. Kempthorne and wife Patricia then boarded Marine One, the designation for a helicopter carrying the president, along with Bush and headed for Donnelly.

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Eye On Boise

Short takes and breaking news from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.