2 Democrats enter race to unseat Sen. Mitch McConnell in 2020

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has represented Kentucky in D.C. since 1985 — but two former Marines are trying to change that.

Last week, Democrats Amy McGrath and Mike Broihier both announced that they had filed the necessary paperwork to stand as Senate candidates against McConnell in 2020, The Washington Times reports.

“Honored to have Martha Layne Collins, the first and only woman governor of Kentucky, and my mom, one of the first women to graduate from UK med school, to sign my papers as I filed to run for Senate,” McGrath tweeted.

McGrath takes aim

A former fighter pilot, McGrath entered electoral politics in 2018 when she attempted to win a seat to represent the Bluegrass State in Congress. While she won 47.8% of the vote, McGrath ultimately failed to unseat Republican incumbent Andy Barr, according to The New York Times.

She recently pointed to Republican Matt Bevin’s Kentucky gubernatorial defeat as being a positive sign for her candidacy, telling the Associated Press: “It absolutely gives us momentum because it shows that against an unpopular Republican incumbent, a Democrat can win.”

She went on to say that she will “win by talking about those bread-and-butter issues that Kentuckians really care about,” adding: “And that’s what I’m going to be talking about over and over again.”

According to McGrath, “With Mitch McConnell, we’re not going to get any progress on these things.”

However, McConnell campaign manager Kevin Golden did not sound particularly impressed, with the Associated Press quoting him as saying that she “can’t possibly make a cogent argument that she could do a fraction of the good Mitch McConnell does for Kentucky, so she’s left with this disjointed, half-baked justification for her candidacy that is simply not ready for prime time.”

Broihier touts military background

For his part, Broihier is a farmer and former journalist who served for two decades as an officer in the Marine Corps. His website declares him to be a supporter of abortion rights as well as stronger gun control measures.

“As a retired Marine and artilleryman, I know what firepower is required on the battlefield,” Broihier states. “As a father, a grandfather, a farmer, a teacher, and a civilian, I know what firepower isn’t necessary on the streets of our country.”

For his part, McConnell appears more than ready to face off against these two challengers, unabashedly trumpeting the amount of money that was earmarked for Kentucky in the recent appropriations bill.

“In what way would Kentucky have been better off without any of these items that I put in the year-end spending bill?” he asked, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal. “I was directly responsible — directly responsible — for these items.”

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