The protesters were loud and proud outside the Shaw Conference Centre last night as they welcomed former U.S. president George W. Bush to the city.

“War criminal, go home,” the protesters chanted as people lined up to get inside.

“Shame on Bush, shame on you” was another crowd favourite.

But Margaret Quinn, a native Texan, still couldn’t wait to see her former president, despite the vociferous protest.

“When I first moved here in 2004, people around me would talk poorly about Bush,” she said.

“Well, doggone it, you can insult me or you can insult my mother but don’t insult my country, he’s my president.”

Inside, despite more protests, Bush chatted to the packed crowd.

“I’m proud to be with you here in Edmonton,” he opened.

“You have oil, you have farming, you have ranch land. It kinda sounds like Texas. Except you speak English better.”