Former combat pilot and senatorial candidate Amy McGrath of Kentucky was all the rage among Democrats for about a week when she announced that she was running to unseat Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Things quickly began to go downhill for McGrath, though, as she pulled off a double flip-flop on a significant issue for the left and cancelled a live television appearance at the very last moment.
Bumpy campaign rollout
The Louisville Courier-Journal reported that McGrath was scheduled to appear Sunday on MSNBC’s Kasie DC program with Kasie Hunt, the network’s Washington, D.C. correspondent and host of the weekend program.
But as Hunt noted on her show Sunday evening, McGrath backed out of the planned segment right before she was supposed to go live on the air.
That cancellation came as the candidate was likely to face some potentially tough questions over her double reversal earlier in the week over whether or not she would have voted to confirm Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh in 2018.
In 2018, when McGrath unsuccessfully ran for a congressional seat in Kentucky, she took a strong stance in opposition to Kavanaugh. But when asked last week about Kavanaugh, she said she would have considered voting to confirm him, only to reverse herself yet again hours later and say she wouldn’t after catching heat from some on the left.
Hunt said that McGrath had “quite a week after announcing her run” against McConnell, during which she raised $2.5 million for the campaign on the first day prior to her flip-flop on Kavanaugh.
The MSNBC host pointed out that McGrath had first garnered attention during a “high-profile” but failed bid in 2018 for Kentucky’s 6th Congressional District seat now held by Republican Andy Barr, a race in which she had raised $8.5 million but fell short on Election Day by three percentage points, or roughly 10,000 votes.
“I was planning on asking McGrath about that race and her fight against Mitch McConnell tonight, but she canceled her appearance on our show at the last minute,” Hunt said. “That invitation does remain open, and of course, Mr. Leader, we would welcome you, Senator McConnell, anytime as well,” she added.
Fitting end to a tough first week
The Courier-Journal reported that a campaign spokesperson informed the paper that McGrath still intended to make an appearance on the show and said, “We couldn’t make it work and are rescheduling with them.”
That may very well be true, and the cancellation could have been the result of something entirely out of McGrath’s control.
Regardless, the abrupt cancellation only served as an appropriate capstone to a rather rough and rocky kickoff to her campaign.