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Heinz Kerry: John Would Avoid War

The wife of presidential candidate John Kerry (search) told a receptive audience in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas that Kerry would seek out all other options before going to war.

"John will never send a boy or girl in a uniform anywhere in the world because of our need and greed for oil," Teresa Heinz Kerry (search) told about 1,200 supporters at the McAllen Civic Center.

She said her husband, as president, would be able to approach the families of slain soldiers and say, "'I did everything I could to prevent this, I'm sorry.' "

She spoke for about an hour and was interrupted frequently by applause and cheering, The (McAllen) Monitor reported in its Monday editions.

Earlier, Heinz Kerry attended a $1,000-a-head private fund-raiser at the McAllen home of developer Alonzo Cantu. It was not immediately clear how much the event raised.

Speaking at the rally, Heinz Kerry criticized President Bush's working relationships with other nations.

"Diplomacy is not about, 'I'm telling you.' Diplomacy is about, 'what do you think?'" Heinz Kerry said. "If you cannot have respect for the other side, you cannot have diplomacy."

Heinz Kerry, switching to Spanish, encouraged supporters to go to the polls.

Hidalgo County, where Heinz Kerry spoke, is one of the most Democratic in Bush's home state. Democrat Al Gore took 61 percent of the vote in the county in 2000, to Bush's 38 percent.

Last month, Heinz Kerry attended a private fund-raiser in San Antonio and spoke to campaign volunteers. In July, a San Antonio event for Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards raised a record $600,000.

Bush campaign spokeswoman Jennifer Miller said Sunday that the Democratic nominee is out of step with Texas.

"John Kerry's 20-year out-of-the-mainstream record does not represent the values of Texans nor does his plan to raise taxes and his lack of a plan to win the war on terror," Miller said.