I have previously noted the dishonesty of Lt Col Amy McGrath Henderson¹ (USMC-Ret), in how she portrays herself as a moderate Democrat in Kentucky, but said “I am further left, I am more progressive, than anyone in the state of Kentucky,” in a 2018 campaign fundraiser held not in the Bluegrass State, but the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Mrs Henderson was a darling of the left, having raised gobs of money for her 2018 campaign for the sixth congressional district seat,² but, having lost that race, recently won the Democratic nomination for the Senate seat currently held by Majority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), though by an unexpectedly close margin.

Now, of all places, The Washington Post has questioned Mrs Henderson’s honesty:

Amy McGrath’s spurious claim that McConnell ‘made millions from China’

By Salvador Rizzo | August 10, 2020 | 3:00 AM EDT

“Oh, and Mitch made millions from China.” Campaign ad from Amy McGrath, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Kentucky

Regular readers of The Fact Checker may get a sense of deja vu from this TV ad running in Kentucky.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), as we’ve written in previous fact checks, ranks among the wealthiest senators despite being on a public salary for more than 30 years.

How did he do it? In 1993, he married Elaine Chao. Now the secretary of transportation, Chao received a large inheritance when her mother died in 2007. McConnell reported it on his financial disclosure form in 2008 as a “gift from a filer’s relative” valued at $5 million to $25 million.

So, like Democratic darling, former Representative Robert Francis “Beta Beto” O’Rourke (D-TX), and former Secretary of State and Senator John F Kerry (D-MA), he made his money the old-fashioned way: he married it.

The “gift from a filer’s relative” has since generated much speculation — and years of fodder for negative ads — that McConnell and his in-laws are cashing in on Chinese connections while he leads the Senate. (He became majority leader in 2015, years after the inheritance.)

The attack ads never explicitly mentioned China, until this one from McGrath started airing, perhaps because the evidence is so thin. . . .

“His trade deals made China richer, their military stronger. They’re spying on us and they didn’t stop the coronavirus. Oh, and Mitch made millions from China,” the narrator of McGrath’s ad says.

The Post has the details of Mrs McConnell’s wealth, and how it was earned by the shipping company created by her parents, which you can see by going to the original, but here’s one final quote:

The story of how McConnell got rich has nothing to do with Chinese trade deals, spycraft or the coronavirus. He simply married into a higher tax bracket. Other than the inheritance in 2007, no record shows McConnell or his wife receiving a financial windfall from the Chaos.

Translation: like former Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who was stomped in her 2014 Senate race against Mr McConnell, Mrs Henderson is repeating a deliberate lie, because she is desperate. One recent poll has Mr McConnell leading Mrs Henderson by a huge margin, 53% to 36%, and Mr McConnell has never lost an election.

It’s really simple: Mrs Henderson has lied to Kentuckians about who she is all along. Mrs Henderson gave her reaction to Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton, saying “The only feeling I can describe that’s any close to it was the feeling I had after 9/11,” which, in effect, told the 62.5% of Kentucky voters who cast their ballots for Mr Trump, ‘You are unAmerican, you are really the enemies of America!’

Might not have been the smartest move, but, at the time she said it, she was the underdog in the Democratic primary for her 2018 campaign, in a ‘Meet the Candidates’ forum on November 20, 2017. Her victory over Lexington Mayor Jim Gray was considered an upset. Perhaps Mrs Henderson didn’t expect to win the nomination without going hard anti-Trump, but stupidity done in winning the primary will carry over to the general election.

Maybe, just maybe, after Senator McConnell defeats Mrs Henderson this year, she’ll fade away in Kentucky politics.
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¹ – Mrs Henderson hasn’t enough respect for her husband, Erik Henderson, to have taken his name, but The First Street Journal does not show similar disrespect, and always refers to married women by their proper names.
² – Mrs Henderson raised $8,542,352 for her 2018 congressional race, spending $8,274,396, leaving $267,956 cash on hand according to the 2018 year end report. Mr Barr raised $5,238,577 spending $5,580,477, leaving $134,679 in cash on hand. Despite outspending Mr Barr by almost $3 million, she lost 51.0% to 47.8% in a closely watched race.
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