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Former three-time world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali wants to come to Utah to campaign for a man who he says is also a fighter - Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.

Hatch's campaign manager, Bud Scruggs, said Ali began to admire Hatch last year when he watched televised congressional hearings on the Iran-Contra scandal and the proposed appointment of Robert Bork to the Supreme Court.Hatch later helped push for the appointment of one of Ali's friends, Steven Saltzburg, to an Justice Department post, for which he sent Hatch an autographed punching bag. That also led to Ali and Hatch visiting several times. Then out of the blue, Ali told the senator that he wants to campaign for him.

"He likes him because he's a fighter and stands up for what he believes," Scruggs said. "Ali is eclectic politically. He is the epitome of the person who votes for the man and not the party."

Hatch's campaign plans to bring Ali to Utah in the fall.