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Group stages unusual protest at the Capitol Building



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SALT LAKE CITY -- Piles of money were delivered Tuesday afternoon to Utah lawmakers. A political protest group was trying to convince Utahns that bribery is par for the course on Capitol Hill by staging the unusual event in the rotunda.

Protesters were costumed as lobbyists, they say, representing the people, and they came bearing gifts.

The so-called "Peoples Bribe" was presented to a mock lawmaker by a mock Ancient Greek, representing democracy. The group then left the money in a pile on the floor of the rotunda.

The concept is essentially a parody, but with a serious purpose. Group members say it's to highlight the point that the Legislature usually favors big business over the interests of the people.

"My generation gets a little bored with the usual political rallies, and so we're trying to find different ways to involve people, to involve young people that don't want to march around holding a sign but want to start doing something fun and creative," said Kate Savage, a member of the group Nuclear ReACTION.

Among the issues they're concerned about are the risks of nuclear power and nuclear waste, the need for clean air and water, ethics reform, civil rights for minorities and a host of other concerns they say get short shrift in the legislature. They say they want "to celebrate the end of a dreary legislative session."

E-mail: jhollenhorst@ksl.com

John Hollenhorst

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