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CNN Today

Republican National Convention: GOP's Biggest Fan Heads for Philly

Aired August 1, 2000 - 2:36 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Tens of thousands of people have descended on Philadelphia for the Grand Old Party's party. A few of them are actually delegates, among them, Sue Everhart of Georgia.

CNN's cameras followed her around earlier this summer, as she got ready for Philly. And our Jeff Greenfield says this woman's energy could light up the entire city.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SUE EVERHART, GOP DELEGATE: And don't forget, somebody has to take balloons, and see we're going put a bow and a hat on him so he will look like a girl elephant.

Kim, where are the flags?

JEFF GREENFIELD, CNN SR. ANALYST (voice-over): Seven-thirty on the morning of July 4, and Sue Everhart and her volunteers have been here since dawn, decorating the Cobb County Republican Women's Club float for the annual Marietta, Georgia, freedom parade.

EVERHART: Yay! That looks good!

Seven-thirty, what time is the first viewing? This can be Mrs. Bush. This can be Laura Bush. See what goes into hometown USA.

GREENFIELD: Sue Everhart has spent at least 1,000 hours this year stuffing envelopes, working the phones, hanging the banners and the bunting. She does have time now, retired from the local bank, a widow with her children grown. But she has been at this for nearly 30 years.

EVERHART: I am going it convince you people.

GREENFIELD: It is a life's avocation, born not out of her childhood, but from her first step into the adult world, into the voting booth.

EVERHART: I felt like the first time I voted, that I was really a VIP, that I was the only one in that voting booth. And from then on, I just -- I shamed people that didn't vote. But I just love this country. And if you love this country, you've got to make a difference. And the only way you make a difference is at the voting box.

GREENFIELD: But the voting booth is only one stop on her non- stop rounds.

EVERHART: It all starts here, that this may be corny or whatever but we'll pick up members today.

GREENFIELD: The Fourth of July parade.

EVERHART: You've got to vote right.

Can I convince you to read about George W. Bush? Big George, I like that, big George, see, I know you are going vote George W, George W. Bush for president.

GREENFIELD: She works the crowd, old...

EVERHART: Can I get you to pass these out to the rest of the people?

GREENFIELD: ... and young.

EVERHART: You're a good man tiger cub.

GREENFIELD: The scouts can't vote, but their parents do.

So do many of those lining Roswell (ph) St.

EVERHART: We're in Bush country now.

GREENFIELD: As her homemade float rolls down toward the town square. And there is no one who can squeeze a few dollars more out of the crowd at the local GOP barbecue.

EVERHART: A dollar, you're cheating, yes, you cheating thing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How much is it?

EVERHART: Well, it's whatever you want to donate. They donated $20.

GREENFIELD: She is, after all, a familiar face to everyone from the neighbors next door, to a neighboring congressman.

EVERHART: I was his first chairman for Women for Bob Barr and I can't vote for him, I don't live in his district.

REP. BOB BARR (R), GEORGIA: But you believe in it.

GREENFIELD: Believe? you better believe it.

This is Jeff Greenfield.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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