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Police get ready for Karl Rove's appearance tonight

Possible protests against President George W. Bush's senior adviser are expected at Tigard speech

Law enforcement agencies across the region are gearing up for possible demonstrations as Karl Rove, a senior adviser to President George W. Bush, speaks tonight in Tigard.

Rove, who has been active in Republican Party politics since the 1970s, is expected to appear at a 6 p.m. 'grassroots' reception at the Embassy Suites Hotel near Washington Square that is sponsored by the Washington County Republican Party.

People interested in attending the event had to sign up online in advance, and tickets cost $50 per person for advanced registrations, $60 per person after April 6 and $40 for donors.

Requests for invitations had to be approved in advance and could be refused by the Washington County Republican Central Committee.

A posting on craigslist.org that revealed the location of Rove's visit asked people to support the writer's desire to protest against anyone who came to the hotel to demonstrate against Rove's presence.

'Our department wants to ensure a safe visit for him or any dignitary,' said Jim Wolf, Tigard Police Department's public information officer. 'We have been planning for any potential for a protest and how to accommodate it. We are working with other local jurisdictions as well. And there are issues of private property.

'We are working in conjunction with the Secret Service, who will be accompanying him.'

Rove ran the elder George H. W. Bush's unsuccessful campaign for president against Ronald Reagan in 1980.

There is a pending federal lawsuit against Rove, Vice President Dick Cheney and others by former ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife, outed CIA spy Valerie Plame Wilson.

Joseph Wilson accused the Bush Administration in July 2003 of twisting pre-war intelligence on Iraq, and Plame's covert CIA identity was leaked to the press. Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby was recently convicted of lying to a grand jury and to FBI agents investigating the disclosure.