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Hatch falls in a hole with story

Published June 15, 2012 11:42 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

In closing remarks during the only primary debate between Sen. Orrin Hatch and challenger Dan Liljenquist today, Hatch attempted to tell a story summing up the reason that experience matters.

Only, it kinda fell flat.

Hatch said that a man was walking down a street, fell into a hole and called out for help. A businessman came by, threw down $20 but that didn't help. A doctor came by, threw down a prescription, but that didn't help. Finally, Hatch noted the man's friend came by and jumped into the hole and could help, because he'd been there before.

Hatch kind of stumbled over the story but he got to the point at the end about experience.

Funny thing is, Hatch's story appears to come from the NBC series the West Wing, which features a liberal president in the White House. Chief of Staff Leo McGarry related this story:

"This guy's walkin' down a street when he falls in a hole. The walls are so steep he can't get out. A doctor passes by and the guy shouts up, 'Hey you! Can you help me out?' The doctor writes a prescription, throws it down in the hole, and moves on. Then a priest comes along and the guy shouts up, 'Father, I'm down in this hole; can you help me out?' The priest writes out a prayer, throws it down in the hole and moves on. Then a friend walks by. 'Hey, Joe, it's me. Can ya help me out?' And the friend jumps in the hole. Our guy says, 'Are ya stupid? Now we're both down here.' The friend says, "Yeah, but I've been down here before and I know the way out."Hatch's version is fine but I think I liked the story the way Leo told it.— Thomas BurrTwitter.com/thomaswburr