More than 500 attend Bush luncheon

President Bush visited Jackson this afternoon, staying about two hours before leaving in Air Force One for Little Rock, Ark., shortly after 2 p.m.

The president was a featured speaker at a campaign fundraiser for Republican U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker of Tupelo.

More than 500 people attended the $1,000-a-ticket luncheon at a private home in Jackson’s Eastover subdivision, Wicker campaign spokesman Ryan Annison said.

Before departing Jackson, Bush shook hands, signed autographs and spoke to more than 100 people who had gathered at the Air National Guard Base at Thompson Field.

“It was incredible,” said Lora Machost, a teller at the National Guard Credit Union on the base. “He was so gracious.”

Machost and many others had the president autograph dollar bills. She also recorded video of Air Force One’s take off.

“I just can’t believe it,” she said. “It was great.”

During Bush’s visit, sections of several roadways, including I-55 and I-20, were blocked off for the motorcade’s trip from the airport to the home of Kelley and Jean Williams.

People stood outside, waving at the motorcade as it passed. Many held cameras and video recorders. Some waved American flags.

Clarion Ledger