Fred Thompson, former U.S. senator from Tennessee, told a local crowd Wednesday that the chance to talk about guns and God is his kind of event.

But though the title of the rally was "Guns & Religion," the politician/actor spent more time talking about the economy.

He urged the crowd to stick with Republican presidential candidate John McCain and "the principles that got us where we are" and not follow candidate Barack Obama "down the road of radical liberalism."

"We've had depressions. . . . We've had recessions," Thompson said. "At the end of the day, we've all stuck by our principles and come out OK."

Thompson, actor Robert Davi, Republican National Committee Deputy Chairman Frank Donatelli and David Barton, president of the religious-based organization
WallBuilders, spoke at the Wednesday afternoon rally at McCain/Palin headquarters in Springettsbury Township.

"I love the guns-and-God mantra, because both are God-given rights," Barton said, telling the crowd to encourage others to vote. "Get people of faith back in the polls."

Dawn Balcom of Springettsbury Township said it was nice to hear religion addressed.

"It was good to hear that these politicians are thinking God is important," she said. "When we get away from God . . . the whole country goes down."

Wayne Lutz of Springettsbury Township said the rally made him more optimistic about McCain's chances.


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"I was worried about the poll numbers," he said. "I'm optimistic good people will get out (and vote)."

Dick Evans, chairman of the McCain/Palin campaign in York County, said the race is closer than some reports indicate.

"The polls are moving in the right direction," he said.

amason@ydr.com; 771-2048

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· Learn more about John McCain at www.johnmccain.com.

· Learn more about Barack Obama at www.barackobama.com.