Of Mermaids and Casting Stones

I happened to (finally) receive the e-mail the other day that has been floating around the web from a group called “Montana Conservatives” and signed by “Montana Conservative Families” with the subject “Leading Top 10 MT GOP Gov candidate has a mermaid problem” which was a forwarded copy of an e-mail with the subject, “If we nominate an adulterer, we will lose.”


The e-mail is about former Congressman and current GOP Gubernatorial candidate, Rick Hill.

They wanted me to know that the information was mentioned in a Republican and Democratic blog. Well, here it is in an independent blog…so you now have the trifecta!

After reading the e-mail my first thought was the Republicans/Conservatives sure know how to tear each other apart.

While I am not employed by Rick Hill or any other candidate (I probably should be because of my vast political knowledge), I did do some checking of the so-called facts in the e-mail. By the way, I have not decided which candidate I like best in the race for Montana Governor in 2012.

First here are some facts: Rick Hill was elected to the House of Representatives in November 1996. He took office in January 1997. He was re-elected in November 1998 and took office for a second term in January 1999. He did not run for a third term; Denny Rehberg won the “open” seat over Nancy Keenan in November 2000. So Rick Hill served in the U.S. House of Representatives from January 3, 1997-January 3, 2001. The source for this information is Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

There were several articles attached to the e-mail and all were dated before the 1996 election – back when Rick Hill and Democratic House Candidate Bill Yellowtail ran against each other. The race turned kind of nasty regarding each candidate’s divorces and child support, etc., but it was not really that close. Hill won the race by about 37,000 votes.

The e-mail stated that Hill “left office under the cloud of an extramarital affair…” but if I remember correctly he had problems with his eyes from radial keratotomy surgery that blurred his vision instead of correcting it. Traveling on planes (which our Washington politicians do a lot) created pressure on his eyes that was painful. So he decided not to run for a third term – at least this is what I heard and read around that time.

The e-mail also stated that, “he carried on regular sex with a cocktail waitress at the Sip and Dip Lounge in Great Falls. (Sip and Dip is a bar similar to “Hooters,” because waitresses wear bikinis and mermaid outfits to seduce the customers.)”

Go ahead and laugh at that paragraph, I did…

I have been to the Sip-n-Dip several times; and I can tell you it’s nothing like Hooters. I have seen the mermaids. I knew one. Waitresses don’t wear mermaid outfits – hasn’t the author of the e-mail ever watched “Splash” with Daryl Hannah? Mermaids don’t have legs…they have a tail (or fins) like a fish! Duh!

I have never seen a waitress wear a bikini (at least that I noticed). So my best guess is that the author of the e-mail has never been there.

While I don’t know if Hill “carried on regular sex with a cocktail waitress” at the lounge, I doubt the writer of the e-mail knows this, either. Also, did the Sip-n-Dip actually have mermaids prior to November 1996? And I wonder what the author’s definition of “regular sex” is…and if the sex was actually “at the lounge” as the writer stated.

There are even more comical parts in the e-mail: “We cannot allow a person with “Bill Clinton values” to be a nominee for the Republican Party for Governor” and “shame on the liberal republican establishment in Helena who are giving Rick Hill money and secretly trying to seal-up the nomination for him.”

I checked Rick Hill’s donation list and let me just say that not too many of those donating could be defined as “liberal.”

The e-mail also stated, “We believe a Republican Primary is for nominating a candidate who EMBODIES CONSERVATIVE SOCIAL VALUES, like family and faith.”

There they go saying the “faith” issue, which means they think they are just a little better because they feel they have not sinned as much as the candidate…Good grief. (John 8:7)

Maybe their candidate is the one who has the most tea stains…

I guess they are saying since a person is divorced, then you are out of luck with some of the folks on the conservative side of the fence? I kind of remember that a very conservative and family values person named Ronald Reagan holds the title as the only U.S. President who was divorced.

The bottom line to all this is that some “pure as snow” conservatives would rather tear a person down and cast stones – which in my view is certainly not the way to win the Governorship in Montana.

Next time maybe they will present a little better argument that might have some facts instead of an argument that is being laughed at all across the web.

Published in: on April 13, 2011 at 8:34 am  Comments (5)  
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  1. […] In a follow-up to my column from last week called “Of Mermaids and Casting Stones” I received several “off the record” comments from folks around the state. These were sent to The Western Word (TWW) e-mail (listed near the top of the screen on the right). You can read the column HERE. […]

  2. I thought this was a fair analysis of the attack email that’s been floating around out there. I would add one thing–Rick was divorced in 1976. When this was written about during the campaign in 1996, it was 20 years old. It is now 35 years old. This stuff is ancient history.

    • Good point – 35 years ago. Thanks for stopping by. -Jack

  3. Hi Jack…

    While I don’t know where the email originated, I do have my hunches. Our blog was the first to post it, but cowgirl soon followed. The squibd account hosting all of the news articles had only one follower when the post went up. It was Ken Miller. It almost seems too obvious, but I suspect your comment about the tea stains definitely applies either way.

    I’m not a fan of Rick Hill, but these days, it is difficult to find a politician I really like. The point of the post was as much to poke fun at the camp behind the email as it was to poke fun at Hill. The mermaid component only sensationalized it. I’ve had the same articles for months but knew Hill won well after they were publicized (although social media was non-existent at that time and cannot be underestimated now either) and I didn’t plan to use them. As for his campaign donors, I agree, they are hardly liberal. Helena establishment, I will agree with- but that is natural as Helena is Hill’s home.

  4. […] bit (although I appreciate their linking to my Piano Pat video). And I’m not the only one: Jack the Blogger has a lengthy piece about this, focused more on the politics of the issue, and he includes this: I have been to the […]

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