Excerpts

Just when it seemed we had dodged every bullet, a new crisis raised its ugly head. Up ’til now, the campaign had ignored Minnesota, partly out of respect for Mondale, the favorite son. But new polls revealed we were within a few hundred votes in Minnesota. The campaign staff decided they should “leave no stone unturned.” As a result, they called me from Air Force One to say they would make a “quick stop” in Minnesota on the way to St. Louis. “We’ll be a little late,” they confessed. With a sinking feeling I asked, “How late?”
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Then it was on to Medford, Oregon, a rugged, beautiful portion of the state. A mere thirty miles north of California and situated in the mild Rogue Valley, Medford had beautiful weather in October.
I had a completely new team. Suzie Trees was the press advance, and Matt Crow was my site advance, another handsome young stud. Even with the compressed time schedule, we had a cohesive and happy group. Our local contact was Hugh Jennings, a Reagan delegate since 1968. Widely known and respected in the area, he was the Reagan– Bush chairman for Medford, and another goldmine of local knowledge and support.
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Good stories like Judd Swift’s revenge make the rounds of advance teams. Some are best told without too many specifics, including names. So the following tales will use proxy names. I cannot confirm or deny that any included my participation. The team was advancing the Moscow summit. Before departure, they had a State Department briefing where they were warned to expect listening devices in their hotel rooms. “Don’t embarrass yourselves, or us, by talking about the Russians,” they were cautioned. “They’ll probably hear everything you say.”
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