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Associated Press
Atlanta – Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue stepped up to a podium outside the state Capitol on Tuesday and led a solemn crowd of several hundred people in a prayer for rain on his drought-stricken state.
“We’ve come together here simply for one reason and one reason only: To very reverently and respectfully pray up a storm,” Perdue said after a choir provided a hymn.
Georgia and its neighboring states are caught in an epic drought that threatens public water supplies. Perdue has ordered water restrictions, launched a legal battle against the release of water from federal reservoirs and appealed to President Bush.
“It’s time to appeal to Him who can and will make a difference,” Perdue told the crowd.
The hourlong event was billed as an interfaith ceremony but only three Protestant ministers joined Perdue, who is a Baptist, and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle.
Nearby, some 20 demonstrators from the Atlanta Freethought Society staged a protest against the holding of a religious observance at the seat of state government.
Meteorologists said earlier this week there was a slight possibility of rain Tuesday, but less of a chance of precipitation was predicted for the rest of the week.
“I believe in miracles,” declared Pastor Maurice Watson of Beulahland Bible Church. “How about you?”
Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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