By Phillip Rawls
MONTGOMERY — A state senator praised his wife Tuesday for taking to Facebook to tell women to stop sending provocative messages and photos to her husband.
Republican Sen. Shadrack McGill of Woodville said he didn't know his wife was going to post the strongly worded message on his Facebook page, but he's grateful.
"I told her that if she ran for my seat, I would vote for her," McGill said in a phone interview.
Heather McGill wrote Monday evening her husband had received inappropriate emails and photos from women multiple times, and she wanted it to stop.
"I am very blessed to have a God fearing, hard working, ministry minded father and husband and it is not just my right but my duty to lovingly serve him by protecting him! I have been silent for long enough! NO MORE!" she wrote.
The senator's wife said she did not know if the messages from women were real or fakes, but she would shame them publicly if the messages didn't stop.
Her post drew about 100 favorable comments and more than 300 likes by midday Tuesday.
"I appreciate the support from friends and fellow church-goers," she said.
McGill was a political newcomer when he won his northeast Alabama Senate seat in 2010 by upsetting one of the Senate's most powerful members, Democrat Lowell Barron of Fyffe. McGill's victory helped Republicans take control of the Legislature after 136 years of Democratic dominance.
In the Legislature, he has sponsored or co-sponsored many conservative bills, including ones allowing home schooled students to participate in public school sports and prohibiting any insurance company participating in a state-run health insurance exchange from offering abortion coverage. Both bills failed.
McGill said Tuesday he's concerned the provocative messages may be dirty tricks leading up to his re-election campaign next year because he experienced something similar in 2010. He said those tricks included two strippers showing up at his home and one at his business. He said he and his wife talked to the two 19-year-olds who banged on his front door after midnight.
The women did not undress, but "they let me know they were strippers from a particular strip club in Huntsville," he said.
He said the other stripper who showed up at his business pretended to have a flat tire but she left a business card from a different strip club in Huntsville. He said he never saw anyone trying to snap a photo of him with the women, but the intent was clear someone was trying to embarrass him.
Shortly after his election, he said his Facebook page got hacked and someone posted a picture of a half-naked woman and the message, "I had a great time last night."
McGill said there was nothing unusual about his wife posting to his Facebook page because he's not a big user. Instead, he said his wife and his legislative secretary handle most of the posts to keep his constituents informed about what's happening in the Legislature.