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LEAVITT ENDORSES HANSEN FOR AN 8TH TERM IN HOUSE

Republican Gov. Mike Leavitt has endorsed Rep. Jim Hansen, Utah's senior U.S. House member, for an eighth term.

Hansen faces Democratic challenger Bobbie Coray in his re-election bid."We have a very significant player in Jim Hansen, and we need to keep him there," the governor said, noting that Hill Air Force Base is threatened by closure.

He said Utah needs the congressman and his clout on the House Armed Services Committee now more than ever.

Coray, a former schoolteacher and Cache County economic development director, has criticized Hansen for staying in office longer than he promised and says he's not doing enough to prevent possible closure of Hill.