Loch Ness Monster defended after being dragged into US presidential election campaign
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The name of Nessie has been invoked in a bid to discredit US Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in a manner that has left the monster's fans distinctly unimpressed.
On the first night of the Republican Party convention the president's eldest son, Donald Trump Jr, took centre stage and compared Democratic hopeful Joe Biden with the Loch Ness Monster.
Donald Jr warned conservatives that Democrats would undo the economic gains that people had made with his father in the White House.
He added: "Biden has promised to take that money back out of your pocket and keep it in the Swamp.
"That makes sense, considering Joe Biden is basically the Loch Ness Monster of the Swamp. For the past half-century, he's been lurking around in there."
The "Swamp" metaphor has been used by Republicans as a derogatory name for Washington when the Democrats were in power there.
Highland businessman Gary Campbell, who runs the Loch Ness Monster Fan Club, sprang to the defence of the iconic creature which attracts millions of visitors to the Highlands.
"Nessie has been on the go since 565AD and has survived everything thrown her way including numerous plagues and two world wars, and during that time has never hurt or attacked anyone.
"What Donald Jr has done is actually compliment Joe Biden by comparing him to Nessie who has done nothing but boost the magic of our country and the Scottish economy."
"Mr Loch Ness", Willie Cameron of Loch Ness Marketing, said: "So Nessie has been dragged into the mire of American politics?
"There is no such thing as bad publicity and at the present moment the more times Loch Ness gets a mention the better it is for the tourism industry in the Highlands, especially since Covid-19."
Inverness MP Drew Hendry tweeted: "As #Nessie's MP, I would say this comparison wins it for Biden.
"He's effectively saying it's a choice between a globally beloved and sought out icon, which has enhanced the reputation of its homeland and continues to enchant billions – or Donald Trump."