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Virginia Democratic Voters Strike Similar Theme: Beat Bush


Voters in Virginia and Tennessee went to the polls Tuesday to register their choice for the Democratic Party's presidential candidate.

A steady stream of Democratic Party faithful cast ballots Tuesday, including retiree Bob Myers, who says he voted for Vermont Governor Howard Dean. Mr. Myers said he is angry about America's ballooning national debt, and sees economic issues as paramount in the presidential race. "President Bush has really performed absolutely terribly on the economy. I would give him an 'F' [failing grade]. He has the potential to be the worst president with the economy ever [in U.S. history]," he said.

American diplomacy was on the mind of interior designer Jane Holland, who said she voted for the Democratic front-runner, Massachusetts Senator John Kerry, because of his experience in international affairs. "Even though President Bush is known as a foreign policy president, he has [made a mess] internationally. And I believe that John Kerry has a more moderate and level-headed position that would reach out to people in other countries," she said.

Ms. Holland's sentiments were echoed by writer Emily Messner, who said she opted for North Carolina Senator John Edwards but will vote for the eventual Democratic nominee, whoever he may be, to replace President Bush. "Having just been overseas, when people ask, 'Where are you from?', it is very difficult to answer, 'America.' You immediately [are accused] that you put [President Bush] in office. I would hope that the next president, hopefully one of these Democrats, will be able to correct the damage that has been done," she said.

Some voters professed great enthusiasm for a particular candidate, his position on the issues and his vision for the nation. But many said they simply want someone, anyone, who will defeat President Bush in November.

President Bush is unopposed for the Republican Party's nomination. In a recent appearance on U.S. television [NBC's Meet the Press], Mr. Bush defended his economic record and his handling of foreign affairs, particularly the decision to go to war in Iraq and said he is confident he will win re-election. Nationwide, public opinion polls show a close race between President Bush and Democratic front-runner John Kerry.

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