Amy McGrath, right, with her husband, Erik Henderson, waves to supporters after being elected as the Democratic candidate for Kentucky’s 6th Congressional District, Tuesday, May 22, 2018, in Richmond, Ky. (AP Photo/James Crisp)
Remember Amy McGrath? She burst onto the scene a few weeks ago as the new hot topic among Democrats. Running against Mitch McConnell is a tall order, but McGrath was going to be the new Beto O’Rourke, taking advantage of a fawning media and Hollywood pumping money into her coffers. NBC News coordinated a hit against McConnell with her campaign launch, allowing McGrath to announce to the glowing approval of Morning Joe.
That euphoria lasted about five minutes because she’s actually just an awful candidate. Just days later, McGrath would change her mind three times on whether she would have voted to confirm Kavanaugh. Meanwhile, Team Mitch started rolling out her old quotes claiming to be the most far left person in Kentucky. That went over about as well as you’d expect in a heavy majority red state.
Obviously, McGrath needed a boost so she did what all sensible people would do. She went on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, because nothing says “I’m a moderate challenger to McConnell” like sitting down with a woman who called Ivanka Trump a ****.
The interview itself was the least of her worries though. It was how and where the interview was conducted that really shows how tone deaf McGrath is.
(video is 23 seconds)
This is the worst Democratic campaign happening in the country right now https://t.co/UzIarI424J
— Zaid Jilani (@ZaidJilani) August 1, 2019
Yes, that’s Amy McGrath being interviewed in a barn, surrounded by fried chicken and parody whiskies while someone picks a banjo. Samantha Bee then sarcastically narrates that this is an “environment that made sure to respect her rich blue grass heritage.” There’s even a horse.
Rule number one in politics? Don’t insult the voters you are needing to bring to your side in order to win your race. Bee’s entire presentation is one giant mockery of Kentucky’s history and culture. For my part, I don’t mind laughing at stereotypes, but from a strategic standpoint, what the heck did I just watch? The path to unseat any incumbent is to position yourself more in line with the voters that your opponent. This accomplishes the opposite. It makes McGrath look like someone who cares more about glad handing with New York elites than the people in her own state.
Mitch McConnell has to be looking on and smiling at this point. He couldn’t have scripted a better start to his re-election effort.
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