The scene both inside and outside the Dick Cheney-Bill Sali fundraiser was both low-key and festive. Inside, Sali supporters in the specified “business attire” sipped wine, ate cheese and crackers and hors d’oeurves, hugged and laughed as they waited for the vice president to arrive. Among the crowd were U.S. Sens. Larry Craig and Mike Crapo, U.S. Rep. Butch Otter and Gov. Jim Risch.
Asked if he was endorsing Sali by his presence, Risch said, “Absolutely – I endorse every Republican candidate.” He added, “At stake here is the control of the U.S. House, and that rises above any personality issues.”
Outside the convention center, protesters with various signs lined busy Front Street, with messages ranging from “Bill Sali YIKES” to “Dick Cheney, 19% approval rating- Representative government?” Some held mock gravestones to protest the war dead in Iraq.
But as the afternoon wore on, both the protesters outside and the supporters inside were vastly outnumbered by folks gathering for Boise’s weekly downtown summer live-music festival, “Alive After 5,” which drew revelers, kids in bathing suits playing in a gushing fountain, and plenty of people relaxing in the shade with drinks and snacks and enjoying music from the live band, the Derailers.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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