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WV Peace Group Calls on Visiting Clinton to "Make Rhetoric a Reality"

July 27, 2007

Hillary Clinton will be in Charleston Friday to raise money for her presidential campaign and she'll be met by West Virginians calling for her to take the lead on ending the war in Iraq. The Reverend Jim Lewis with West Virginia Patriots for Peace says his group usually focuses on the White House and its Republican supporters in Congress but he says the Democrats share in the blame.

"We want the Republicans to wake up to the reality in Iraq, but we want the Democrats to make their rhetoric a reality. They're talking a lot about this war; we want them to act more aggressively in terms of bringing these troops home."

He believes the war in Iraq has hurt West Virginia's economy by taking reserve troops away from their jobs and by spending over a billion dollars in West Virginia tax money that could have been better used at home.

"We are struggling here in this state to find the money for health care, scholarships for kids, education and teachers. We think what that money could have done to ensure more economic security for us here in West Virginia."

The group will set up across the street from the fund-raiser with its Wall of Remembrance - a block-long memorial containing the names of the over 3,000 Americans who have died in the war in Iraq. Lewis says he's invited Sen. Clinton to spend a few minutes at the memorial before the fund-raiser.

Clinton is expected to focus on the nation's economic security at the fund-raiser.

Rob Ferrett/Eric Mack, Public News Service - WV