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WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH — Sen. Elizabeth Dole was in Wrightsville Beach Friday night raising cash for the GOP. Sen. Dole didn't speak at the podium; she walked among the crowd, talking about her "Dole plan" as she campaigns for 2008. Part of what she says is important to her, is also important to our area. "Looking to the future, looking to improve beach re-nourishment and the dredging of the Wilmington harbor and the inlets," Sen. Dole said. We'll be fighting to get funds for these initiatives." She also answered questions from our viewers. Harold Sampson wanted to know about the senator's support of the war in Iraq and where she stands on the president's troop surge plan. Sen. Dole said she studied the plan carefully. "I'm satisfied that this is the right thing to do, but it all depends on the Iraqis stepping up to the plate and taking charge," she said. Henry Foy asked whether Dole supports the Navy poisoning birds so they won't interfere with a new naval landing strip in Washington and Beaufort County. Dole said, "I do not favor that policy." On that issue Dole urged concerned people to speak up. The public hearings run from March 19 to April 4. And as for next year's race for the white house, the senator is staying quiet, but supporting her party. "Well, I'm going to hold off on terms of endorsing at this time. I think that we've got a number of people that are interested and have already tossed our hat in the ring. We're going to work hard to make it a republican year." Sen. Dole says she will run again next year. She says one of her main initiatives is education and continuing to develop North Carolina's community colleges.

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