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Fmr. Marine pilot McGrath loses after raising $90 million against McConnell

Retired U.S. Marine Lt. Colonel Amy McGrath hugs a supporter after she gave her concession speech in a House race at the Eastern Kentucky University Center for the Arts in Richmond, Ky., on November 6, 2018. (Charles Bertram/Lexington Herald-Leader/Zuma Press/TNS)
November 03, 2020

Fox News has projected incumbent U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is projected to win the Kentucky senate race against former U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18 pilot and Kentucky Democratic Senate candidate Amy McGrath. McGrath had raised about $90 million in her attempt to flip the Senate seat.

With less than half of votes returned, Fox News projected McConnell would retain his seat and defeat McGrath. NBC has also since projected a win for McConnell.

According to her latest Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings, McGrath had raised about $90 million in her race. McConnell, by contrast, raised about $57 million for the race, according to his latest filings.

McConnell, 78, spoke to supporters after his declared win. “I’m humbled and grateful that you’ve rehired me to keep fighting for your families and serving our commonwealth for the next six years,” he said.

McGrath retired as a Lt. Col in the Marine Corps and was the first female to fly a fighter jet in a Marine Corps combat mission. She announced her campaign in July 2019, and highlighted her history as a fighter pilot.

In her campaign announcement, McGrath said she wrote a letter to McConnell when she was 13-years-old, expressing her desire to be a fighter pilot. Announcing her campaign, she said, “Mitch McConnell never wrote back, and I know I’m not the only Kentuckian he’s ignored in his years in Washington. Let’s defeat him together.”

She also characterized herself as an outsider who would combat corruption.

A Democratic senator has not been elected in Kentucky since 1992.

McGrath previously ran for a House seat in Kentucky in the 2018 midterm elections but lost to Republican incumbent Andy Barr by more than three percent of the vote.