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thedrifter
04-19-06, 11:31 AM
Article Display Date: 4/18/2006 12:00 AM
President to visit soldiers' families in 29 Palms
Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
San Bernardino County Sun

TWENTYNINE PALMS - President Bush is expected to visit the families of U.S. Marines and Navy personnel Sunday at the end of a three-day trip to California, a White House spokesman said Monday.

The president is scheduled to attend church services in Twentynine Palms before a lunch meeting with military families, White House spokesman Alex Conant said. Exact details on Bush's trip were not provided.

"A lot of this is still coming together," Conant said.

Twentynine Palms is near the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, and Mayor Kevin Cole said he's counting on the commander in chief's visit to boost the spirits of those whose loved ones are at war.

"I'm glad that he's coming out. It's something that's good for the morale of the families in Twentynine Palms," Cole said.

Bush is scheduled to arrive in San Jose on Friday to discuss his "American Competitiveness Initiative," Conant said. Proposed in Bush's State of the Union address, the initiative would invest federal money in research and development efforts, and emphasize math and science learning in schools.

Bush's Saturday itinerary includes a visit to West Sacramento to visit the California Fuel Cell Partnership, a group of auto, oil and technology firms and government agencies formed to bring hydrogen-powered autos to the market. The same day, the president is set to travel to the Palm Springs area for a Republican National Committee event. He is expected to stay in Rancho Mirage while in Southern California.

Specifics regarding the president's visit with the Republican organization are still pending, RNC spokesman Tucker Bounds said.

Bush most recently visited the region in August. During that trip, Bush stopped in Rancho Cucamonga to promote the administration's Medicare policies. Sunday's visit would mark the president's fourth visit to the area.

Ellie