Curious about the former Marine fighter pilot and political candidate Amy McGrath? Get to know her here.
Amy McGrath is a retired United States Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel who fails from Georgetown, Kentucky — and who is now running for the United States Senate to "fix Washington and give Kentuckians back their voice," according to her official website. McGrath is a Democratic candidate for Congress in Kentucky's 6th Congressional District.
McGrath is also a wife to Erik McGrath, a retired Navy pilot and registered Republican, as well as a mother to her three children, Teddy, George and Eleanor.
"[McGrath] became a Marine combat pilot to fight and defend her country and now she is taking the fight to Washington to solve the problems Kentuckians face in their every-day lives," according to her official website. "[McGrath] was a registered independent for 12 years, so she always prioritizes practical solutions over partisan interests. She’s not running for Senate to get rich and join the Washington swamp. [McGrath] is ready to take on career politicians... and bring accountability and leadership back to Kentucky."
Here are some of Amy McGrath's positions on some key issues in national dialogue.
Mcgrath is pro-choice. She once tweeted: "Our focus ought to remain on preserving our constitutional rights, the health and well-being of the mother, and the rights of women to make their own choices without interference from the government."
On her official website, McGrath writes: "We should begin with the items that have overwhelming public support: tighten enforcement when it comes to preventing the mentally ill from purchasing any weapons, bar purchases by people on no-fly or terror watch lists, and if you have to undergo a background check at a licensed gun dealer (as I have), you should not be able to evade that by obtaining a weapon at gun shows or privately."
According to VoteSmart.org, McGrath also writes: " Over the past few months, I've been asked a few times about whether I would ever seek the NRA's endorsement or accept campaign contributions from them? The answer is No."
On her official website, McGrath writes: "America should be leading the world in responding to climate change, not running away. The Paris Climate Accords is a global agreement to recognize climate change and pursue a call to action to mitigate its detrimental effects. When President Trump pulled out of the agreement, he not only made an irresponsible move given the trajectory of the global climate, but also severely lessened our power in world leadership. He signified a lack of responsibility and seriousness in protecting our world."
On her official website, McGrath writes: "We need leaders with a robust understanding of this conflict who will push the Administration to utilize other government agencies, not just military. If there is one takeaway I'e gained after fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq in multiple combat deployments, it's this: the military cannot 'win' this alone."
According to VoteSmart.org, McGrath writes: "Many veterans suffering from chronic pain and PTSD report improved healthcare outcomes from medical cannabis and I'm proud to stand with the American Legion in calling for the removal of cannabis as a Schedule 1 drug and permit its use to treat ailments that veterans, and others, face. It may also alleviate some of the dependence on opioids for pain relief and that, alone, is a meaningful reason to consider moving in that direction.
"On the issue of full legalization, I'd like to see our government permit full research on the subject. The Schedule 1 classification means that we can't even conduct studies on the effect of legalization. Perhaps it's the military officer in me, but I'm all about thoughtful planning and research before diving head first into fully opening that door. But I hope the state — and the federal government — begin to relax its unnecessarily rigid position on medical cannabis."
According to VoteSmart.org, McGrath writes: "Let's talk about sexual harassment. It's such an important, and long overdue conversation for us to have as a nation. First, we cannot let it become a partisan issue. Otherwise, it will become a political football and never be dealt with by our society, and we lose a crucial opportunity for meaningful reckoning, healing, and education. This affliction doesn't fall along partisan lines -- Roy Moore, John Conyers, Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose, Al Franken, Donald Trump, and the list goes on.
"All inappropriate physical harassment perpetrated by those in power upon women (or men) is wrong and cannot be tolerated, and predatory behavior towards children/teenagers, as is alleged in Alabama regarding Roy Moore, should be treated for what it is — outright child molestation..."
Amy McGrath hails from Kentucky, where she was born the youngest of three children to Donald and Marianne McGrath. Her father was a high school English teacher, and her mother was impressively among the few first women to graduate from the University of Kentucky medical school.
At just 13 years old, McGrath had dreamed of becoming a fighter pilot, according to her official website. But her dreams were far fetched then, as women were not yet allowed to serve in combat roles in the United States military. As such, she wrote to her elected officials to ask them to change the law — but she reportedly never heard back.
Nevertheless, McGrath went on to go to school at and graduate from the United States Naval Academy. She overcame the odds against her to become the very first woman in the Marine Corps to fly a combat mission in an F/A-18 fighter jet. From there, she then served 20 years in the Marines where she flew a total of 89 combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, specifically targeting al-Qaida and the Taliban.
She later retired and moved back to Kentucky to raise her family, where she's now a Democratic candidate in the state's sixth Congressional District.
Learn more about Amy McGrath here:
AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreportand Facebook.