By Ellen Thompson/Havre Daily Newsfirstname.lastname@example.org
Diana Kerry, sister of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, will come to Havre on Saturday and join supporters at the Eagles Club at 7 p.m.
"I've been in politics around Hill County for about 30 years. ... I don't think there has been" a representative of a presidential campaign in Havre before, said Ray Peck, a former state representative from Havre and a member of the steering committee for Kerry in Montana.
Diana Kerry's appearance in Havre is part of a weekend visit to the Hi-Line and to area Indian reservations, where she will talk with community members and tribal leaders and urge strong voter turnout, Democratic National Committee state director Bill Lombardi said.
"We've been working so hard since before the primary to get American Indian people to vote and we've been doing a lot of planning since then on getting out the Indian vote. Diana Kerry's visit will give a boost to that," state Rep. Carol Juneau, D-Browning, and Montana Democratic Party vice chair, said today.
This is Kerry's second visit to the state. Her first visit brought her to Bozeman, Butte, Helena and Missoula, and the Crow and Northern Cheyenne Indian reservations.
"Diana was here and visited Montana a couple of months ago. She ... wanted to be sure she got back to get to other reservations, as well as other urban communities. She felt it was important to not just see two reservations" of the state's seven total, Juneau added.
Kerry has been a school teacher much of her life, working both abroad and, more recently, at an inner-city middle school in Boston. She has been an active supporter of her brother's campaign, Juneau said.
Kerry's second trip to Montana has been in the works for two weeks. The visit comes as a result of efforts by the Kerry Montana Steering Committee and the Montana Democratic Party, as well as Kerry's positive experience in Montana and interest in reaching more Montana residents, Juneau said.
Kerry will be landing in Great Falls on Saturday and meeting with members of the Native American community there before continuing to Havre that evening. She plans to see both the Fort Belknap and Rocky Boy's Indian reservations and then heading west to the Blackfeet and Flathead reservations on Sunday and Monday.
"We're pretty excited," Hill County Democratic Party chair Debi Friede said. "These small states have some value this time around. A couple electoral votes here and a couple electoral votes there and you've won the election."