President Bush waves after starting the engine on a Harley while touring Harley Davidson Vehicle Operations in York, Pa. The man applauding, right, is Harley Davidson President and CEO Jim Ziemer. Photo by Kevin Lamarque/REUTERS.
Maybe it's the speed, the leather or the vroom factor, but there's a certain attraction between recent presidents and Harley Davidson motorcycles. Both Reagan and Clinton visited this factory in York, Pa., and today it was President George W. Bush's turn.
The congressman representing this district, Todd Platts, R-York Co., explained to a local newspaper that the White House wanted to do this event. "They raised it with us about two weeks ago, that they were looking to do an economic event in York... and were looking at Harley-Davidson," Platts said.
Platts described Harley Davidson as "a company that's shown tremendous success in the world marketplace." Twenty years ago, the company nearly closed down, he said. "It went from the brink of closure to now leading the pack -- an American company that's doing great all over the world."
One wonders if the company were making flanges or bobby pins whether the presidential allure would be quite as great.