McGrath 7

Amy McGrath looks sober as she delivers her concession speech on Tuesady night.

I can't say that I feel bad for Amy McGrath.

Not trying to be rude. Just truthful.

She knew what she was getting herself into.

Many others have tried to unseat Mitch McConnell from the United States Senate.

They've all failed.

Since his narrow victory over incumbent Walter Huddleston in 1984, McConnell has won re-election by fairly comfortable margins.

Six years ago, he defeated Alison Lundergran Grimes by an impressive 16 percentage points -- the second-biggest victory of his career.

There are strong indication that this will be McConnell's final election.

His seventh term, if he wins, could be his last.

The Democrats, desperate to finally Ditch Mitch, want so badly to deny him one last victory.

The biggest problem, though, was finding a good candidate.

At the top of the list for many was McGrath, who had lost to Andy Barr two years ago in the race for Kentucky's 6th Congressional seat.

Just one problem.

McGrath wasn't really that interested.

It took plenty of arm-twisting from the top Democrats in Washington, most notably Senator Chuck Schumer, to get her to change her mind.

The 44-year-old retired Marine announced her candidacy almost a year ago.

I can't help but imagine that she's probably regretted that decision ever since.

Her campaign certainly has not been able to gain any real traction at all.

And that's really not her fault.

The COVID-19 crisis has forced her off the trail. She can't travel throughout the state, meeting potential voters and interacting with groups of supporters.

McConnell, meanwhile, has garnered national attention by helping pass one of the biggest financial relief bills in the history of the country.

The six-term senator is getting things done in Washington D.C., while McGrath is stuck at home relying on television ads to reach her desired audience.

And McGrath's commercials are painfully ineffective.

They seem to have no focus. The spots lash out at McConnell in any number of directions, often with conflicting messages.

Each ad, of course, is quickly countered with another brilliant rebuke from McConnell's veteran campaign staff.

It's painful to witness.

McGrath claimed in one commercial that the CARES Act wasn't helping to fight COVID-19. McConnell blasted right back with an ad reminding the retired Marine that the bill easily passed both houses of Congress (419-6 in the house and 96-0 in the Senate) with overwhelming support from Democrats.

McGrath tried again.

Another ad claimed that the CARES Act funding wasn't actually getting to the people of Kentucky, but was going to big businesses.

McConnell's campaign answered back with another crushing blow. His ad featured actual residents of the Commonwealth who had actually received financial assistance from the bill.

In one of her latest commercials, the increasingly desperate McGrath uses one of President Trump's favorite terms. She claims she's going to drain the swamp and even looks right at the camera and in a stern voice says, "Senator, you are the swamp."

It's really getting kind of embarrassing.


There's still five months until the election. Anything can happen -- especially in 2020.

Most political insiders didn't ever really give McGrath much of a chance to beat McConnell.

It would have been a tough battle in a normal election cycle to unseat one of the most powerful people in America.

McGrath was apprehensive about taking on that challenge.

And with good reason.

Now, additional circumstances have made that uphill battle seem like a solo expedition up Mt. Everest.

The stakes are extremely high for McGrath for other reasons.

After losing in a bid for a U.S. House seat, a setback to McConnell will make her a two-time political loser.

That's tough to overcome.

Her political career could be essentially over by November -- and she's just 44 years old.

McGrath probably should have waited and faced Barr again. She was almost able to knock off the incumbent congressman two years ago. She lost by less than 10,000 votes.

McGrath was convinced, though, to try to do something others weren't able to do.

And the result will more than likely be the same.

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