Candidate Conversations: Nick Henry

Candidate Conversations: Nick Henry

I first spotted Nick Henry at a protest. Standing over 6ft tall and carrying a huge, tattered American flag, he was hard to miss. My initial thought was “Is this Republican here to start shit?” So as any good organizer would, I asked him just that. I quickly learned that this patriotic giant was attending as a supporter. Thus began my acquaintance with HD 22’s Democratic Candidate, Nick Henry.

At the time we met, I was actually running for that same seat. So, Nick and I had several conversations about what mattered to him and what mattered for our district. There are plenty of points we agree on, and a few that we don’t. I’d say what stands out most about Nick is his firm belief in the good of people- even those he doesn’t agree with.

Nick is many things. He’s a husband, a public servant, a deeply spiritual person, and a hunter. He’s also an outspoken advocate for mental health services, especially for men. Nick takes on the stigma of mental health directly. He’s been very forthcoming about his own struggle with depression, including a previous attempt to take his own life. Now, Nick is looking to revitalize the mental health care system in Montana.

What I think makes Nick stand out the most though, is that he’s a regular hardworking guy who knows that you can work your ass off and still be poor. I grew up in a doublewide trailer in a neighborhood full of trailers. The same neighbor Nick is running in.
The fact is, running for office is time consuming. Its expensive, and unless you’ve got easy access to cash it can be almost unattainable. Most of us can’t afford to self-fund. Most of us are living paycheck to paycheck. We’re being priced out of the housing market. Gas and utilities are going up, and we’re doing a lot more math figuring out how we’re gonna make ends meet each month.

Nick is living this same struggle. He works a full-time civil servant position, but you’ll still find him doing odd jobs on the weekend and stocking his fridge with wild game to get through the winter.  He’s one of very few candidates that understands the daily struggle of low and middle income families- because he lives it.  Money has taken such a hold on politics that you’ll almost never see a guy like Nick with his name on the ballot. Electing one of our own is a rare opportunity.  The biggest point of agreement between me and Nick is that class solidarity is the most powerful force in the world. I can think of no better person to represent HD 22, our home, than Nick Henry.