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    click to enlarge KELAN LYONS
    • Kelan Lyons

    Facing a tough fight to keep her seat as U.S. representative for Utah’s 4th Congressional District, Mia Love brought out the big guns: Mitt Romney.

    “Mia Love and the Republican team have gotten things done. We need to make sure and reelect Mia Love and this Republican team to keep things happening for Utah and for the nation in the future,” Romney, the former presidential candidate and Republican nominee running to replace Sen. Orrin Hatch, told a 250-member crowd Friday night.

    More than 40 local, state and federal elected representatives came together for the “Run with Mia Rally” at the Showbarn at Thanksgiving Point. Love, a two-term congresswoman whose constituents hail from parts of Salt Lake City and its surrounding suburbs, represents a district that President Donald Trump won with less than 40 percent of votes in 2016, making her race a battleground her opponent, Democrat Ben McAdams, hopes to win.

    “We’ve got to make sure the Democrats don’t get their hands on this seat,” Sen. Mike Lee said.

    Mayors, state representatives and Republican leaders praised Love for her pro-life views, efforts to combat human trafficking and her emphasis on keeping education controlled by local interests, not the federal government. “She’s also a badass. I don’t know if I can say that. She’s amazing,” Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox, the evening’s emcee, said.

    Romney, a very popular figure across the state who in early polls enjoyed a comfortable level of support over Democratic candidate Jenny Wilson, talked about campaigning for Love two years ago during her previous reelection campaign. “I said then, ‘If we elect Mia Love and make her part of the Republican team in Washington, they’ll come together and get things done’—and have they done that,” Romney said. “What they’ve done has been the best-kept secret in the country.”

    The former Massachusetts governor spoke highly of Love and other Republicans’ passing of tax reform initiatives and also talked about Love and other Republicans giving a raise to Hill Air Force Base service members and allocating funds for the modernization of the military. “These things will make sure that Hill and other bases like them are able to defend us in the future,” he said.

    Love’s speech closed out the night. She talked about her three children and her pro-life views, alluded to her role in securing Josh Holt’s freedom from a Venezuelan prison and touted conservative principles about taxes and a smaller federal government. “When we talk about limiting government, by the way, it’s not that we’re talking about cutting everything, it’s about making sure that things are done at the appropriate level,” Love said.

    Echoing other speakers, Love took jabs at Democrats by warning what a blue wave could mean for the House of Representatives. “I’m gonna get real,” she said. “Here’s what’s at stake: We know what the eight years of Nancy Pelosi did to us. Are we willing to go back there?”

    Wanda and Gary Bullard attended the rally. Though neither of them voted for Trump, Wanda said she thinks he should be impeached. The retired couple appreciated the show of support by Love’s fellow Republicans as she fights her way through a highly competitive election.

    “I just think she’s amazing,” Wanda Bullard said. “Anybody that Mitt Romney supports, we’re right behind them.”

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