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Revealed: schedule for 'Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear'

Comedy Central has provided no details about the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert 'Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.' But the park service permit lays out the schedule minute-by-minute.

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Dozens of groups from the established to the fringe have announced their intentions to be part of the extracurricular fun: One Nation March to Rebuild America and End War, the Molotov march, NARAL Pro-Choice America, Media Matters. There will even be a performance art duo wandering the crowd in historical costumes, politely requesting guests take an oath to honor the nobility within themselves.

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Then, there is the burgeoning bus-capade. Busloads of fans from all over the country are set to trundle into the nation’s capitol for this event.

There is the high-profile stuff, such as the 200 buses sponsored by the Huffington Post founder. And then, there is the truly grass-roots entrepreneurs, such as Clark University freshman Rian Watt. He hustled a grant from the school and is charging $25 a head for the busload of 57 fellow students for an overnight ride. He says the group includes Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, and Independents.

“I haven’t been to D.C. since I was 11,” he says, “ so I’m looking forward to taking in all the monuments and other spots on the mall, too.”

One additional note: the permit calls the rally, “a political engagement and entertainment event.” So, will this hybrid moment actually make a political mark of any importance? Opinions are certainly mixed on this point.

“It's a joke, and it will have no impact on the midterm elections,” says Washington attorney Jordan Sekulow, a former youth organizer for President George W. Bush in 2004, in an e-mail. “Most Americans won't be following this rally, certainly not likely midterm election voters – not usually Stewart's demographic.”

"Will it be funny?" he asks. "Yes." Will there be Republicans in the audience? "Yes. We have a sense of humor." Does it really matter? "No.”

Mr. Watt, a first-time voter this year, disagrees emphatically. “I signed up for this because Colbert and Stewart have spent 11 years lobbing spitballs at the process, and now they are actually doing something about changing the tone of the debate,” he says.

It might not rock the world, he adds, “but for all those who have been influenced by the cynical detachment of those comedians, this move to engage will really have an impact.”

In Pictures: Who will be at the Rally to Restore Sanity?


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