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Sen. Lloyd Bentsen began his first solo campaign trip since receiving the Democratic vice presidential nomination, ranging from his Texas stronghold to stops in New Mexico, California, Nevada and the deep South.

Drawing on his record as chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Bentsen was speaking Wednesday before a businesswomen's group in Albuquerque, three days after Vice President George Bush outlined his plan for a child-care tax cut before the same group.From that appearance, Bentsen was flying to San Francisco to address a labor group, and to Reno to address state legislators. He planned to go to Amarillo, Texas, for a home-state rally in Senate opponent Beau Boulter's hometown.

After the Texas stop, Bentsen will travel to either Lousiana or Mississippi before returning to Washington on Saturday.