President speaks at McConnell fundraiser

By Eric Flack

(LOUISVILLE) -- It was the largest individual fundraiser in Kentucky history. Friday night, President George W. Bush stumped for Senator Mitch McConnell, helping him raise more than $2 million for his re-election campaign. As WAVE 3 Investigator Eric Flack reports, the President said he and McConnell are of like mind on key issues facing the country.

A rousing ovation was met with a bit of humor from the President as he took the podium at the Seelbach Hotel in Louisville.

"Kentucky whiskey still works," he laughed.

But Mr. Bush's speech took a more serious tone as he spoke about the war on terror, calling on Congress to fund his plan to send up to 28,000 more troops to fight in Iraq.

"Our men and women in uniform risk their lives as they carry out this plan to secure Baghdad and to secure this country. And they need the support of the United States Congress."

In a wide ranging speech that lasted just over 30 minutes, the President touted his no-child left behind education plan, said the country must fix social security, and promised to end frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits.

Earlier, it was the strength of the American economy on Senator Mitch McConnell's mind.

"Our economy, the American economy, has grown more since President Bush has been in office than the entire economy of the People's Republic of China," McConnell said as he introduced the President.

But Mr. Bush gave credit to the American entrepreneur and small businessman, who are helped, he said, by tax cuts.

"And I've got a good idea for the United States Congress. We passed tax relief, it worked, they need to make the tax relief permanent," the President said.

Mr. Bush said he has a plan to balance the budget in 5 years without raising taxes. And he said he needs friends in Washington like Mitch McConnell, to carry it out.

The $2.1 million raised smashed the old record of $1.3 million for individual fundraiser in Kentucky. That mark was set when President Bush's father came to Louisville back in 1989, again to raise money for Senator McConnell.

Online Reporter:  Eric Flack

Online Producer: Charles Gazaway