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Reed linked to McCain fundraiser; Barr to pay visit

A Duluth man was at the center of controversy this week when Republican presidential hopeful John McCain came to town for a fundraiser.

But after days of negative comments from Democrats, Ralph Reed did not even attend the Atlanta event.

Democrats had chastised McCain, who is known for eschewing lobbyists, for taking part in a fundraiser linked to Reed, who has ties to the Jack Abramoff scandal that McCain investigated.

Reed, the former Christian Coalition director who became a political consultant when he moved to Georgia, had sent out a fundraising e-mail on McCain's behalf.

'It's incredible to me that he (McCain) would even allow Ralph Reed in the room with him after being head of the committee that let Abramoff have it,' state Democratic Party Chairwoman Jane Kidd said.

A spokesman for McCain said Reed was not in attendance and held no role in the campaign.

In a statement Reed called the attacks by Democrats 'absurd.' He said he is not part of the host committee for the Atlanta fundraiser.

Barr fundraiser

Another presidential candidate will be the subject of a fundraiser this weekend.

The Libertarian Party of Georgia is hosting "An Evening with Bob Barr and Friends," in Atlanta to raise money for libertarian candidates.

Barr, a former Republican congressman who lost a 2002 primary against John Linder, is running for president as a libertarian. He will attend the Saturday event along with his vice presidential nominee Wayne Allen Root.

Also scheduled to attend are U.S. Senate candidate Allen Buckley, Public Service Commission District 4 candidate Brandon Givens and Public Service Commission District 1 candidate John Monds.

Registration information can be found at http://www.lpgeorgia.com/2008banquet.php.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.