Norquist gets up close and personal with mermaids

He has always told his kids to doubt the existence of mermaids, but a night at the Florida Aquarium might have turned Grover Norquist into a believer.

At Monday night’s Spirit of Tampa reception, held by the Distilled Spirits Council and co-sponsored by The Hill, guests sipped on politically inspired libations as they toured the array of aquatic creatures.

But more than the turtles and otters, what had partygoers buzzing (and a few tongues wagging) was a pair of “mermaids” — in the form of bikini-clad ladies sporting turquoise tails as they swished and swashed around a tank while occasionally catching their breath from the air tubes they clutched.

Norquist told ITK, “My wife took videos with the phone camera for our 3- and 4-year-old daughters, who are very big fans of mermaids. We’ve been telling them mermaids are make-believe.”

The Americans for Tax Reform president says the cinematic evidence could make his daughters think he goofed when it comes to the fantastical water-dwellers: “Now I worry that if we show them these videos, they’re going to be convinced they’re real.”

Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, who is running for the right to replace retiring Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), also seemed fascinated by the enchanting swimming ladies. Thompson could be heard oohing and aahing while passing by the exhibit.