Doug LeMere took a snapshot of America. War survivors stood alongside a World War II veteran, who happened to be a former U.S. Senator.
Bob Dole shook hands with nearly 300 military veterans. They were in the Broadwater Tower convention center, taking pictures of another man who was trying to live the American dream.
Haley Barbour's campaign for governor has less than two weeks to go. On Friday, it got a helping hand from a GOP ally. "The reasons that I've come to admire Bob Dole are symbolic of what you as veterans stand for," Barbour told the crowd.
Dole is one of the most recognizable faces in the republican party. His speech to veterans was filled with humorous anecdotes. Some were about Ronald Reagan. One was about Dole's long friendship with Barbour. "When my wife thought she was going to be President of the United States, who did she talk to?," he asked. "Not me. She called Haley. But she let me sit in on the meeting, which I thought was very nice of her."
In between laughs, Dole saluted his fellow veterans. And he told them to get behind Haley and Marcia Barbour. In the former senator's mind, their picture belongs in the governor's mansion. "That's what we think of Haley and Marcia. So they're sort of like family," he said.
This wasn't the first time Haley Barbour used his republican party connections to help his campaign. President Bush and Vice President Cheney have both been to Mississippi to raise money for Barbour.
In fact, President Bush will be back in Mississippi stumping for Barbour on November 1st. He'll make stops in Gulfport and DeSoto County. Next week, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani will visit Pascagoula to campaign on Barbour's behalf.