By Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
October 27, 2020
When I first went to the Senate, I was the lowest man on the totem pole with a desk in the very back. Being in the back fueled me to work harder for Kentucky every single day because I knew to truly make a difference for our Commonwealth, we needed a front row seat. Now, as Senate Majority Leader, Kentucky has a seat at the very front of the Senate, ensuring Kentucky issues are front and center.
Of the four congressional leaders, I am the only one not from New York or California. I give Kentucky the opportunity to punch above its weight and bring home big wins we would not otherwise get if we had a rookie Senator.
My record for Kentucky is indisputable. In the past six years, I steered more than $17.5 billion in federal funding back to Kentucky to rebuild roads, fight the opioid epidemic, and create new opportunities in rural communities. Kentuckians count on me to deliver.
Let’s start with the CARES Act, the biggest economic rescue package in U.S. history. This rescue package was written in my office in March and passed the Senate without a single dissenting vote. The CARES Act has made a $13 billion impact across Kentucky to address both the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
This rescue package helped families pay bills, businesses stay open, and frontline heroes secure much-needed PPE. Over 50,000 Kentucky small businesses received more than $5.2 billion to continue paying their workers, and 2.3 million Kentucky families received more than $3.2 billion to help make ends meet. It helped hospitals treat more patients, brought aid to Kentucky farmers, and funded state and local governments. The CARES Act impact is seen and felt across Kentucky.
I secured landmark funding to help Kentucky’s fight against the opioid epidemic. To date, Kentucky has received more than $275 million, including an $87 million grant for the University of Kentucky to reduce opioid overdose deaths, the largest grant in UK history. From the landmark 21st Century Cures Act in 2016 to this year’s CARES Act, I am at the center of the Senate’s work producing extraordinary results for the Commonwealth’s fight against opioids.
There is no mistaking the War on Coal led by Barack Obama and Joe Biden caused declines in our coal communities. And there is no mistaking that I am fighting nonstop to protect our miners and create opportunities in Eastern Kentucky.
Working with Rep. Hal Rogers, over $105 million has gone to Eastern Kentucky for infrastructure and tourism projects, including a new children’s hospital in Pikeville through the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Development pilot program. I also secured record funding through the Appalachian Regional Commission to spur economic growth in Eastern Kentucky.
My leadership saved health care benefits for 13,000 miners and shored up pension benefits for 92,000 miners so they did not lose what was almost wiped out by the Obama administration. Ask UMWA President Cecil Roberts who Kentucky’s coal champion is. He’ll say, “Mitch McConnell,” and he recently praised my efforts as “crucial” in protecting our miners. While I have delivered millions to help Kentucky coal families and rural communities, my opponent wants to pass the Green New Deal and eliminate their way of life.
President Trump and I fundamentally transformed the federal judiciary by confirming pro-Constitution judges at a clip typically reserved for the first Saturday in May — or September in this year’s case. Since 2017, the Senate has confirmed three Supreme Court Justices and followed through on my mission to “leave no vacancy behind” by filling every circuit court vacancy for the first time in 40 years.
I led the historic effort to revamp the tax code, cutting taxes and lowering utility bills for Kentucky’s middle-class families. I slashed Obama-era red tape and strengthened our military, providing a pay raise for our troops and shepherding the largest year-over-year increase in defense spending in 15 years, putting the needs of Kentucky’s bases ahead of the rest.
I helped bring the Army’s Fifth Corps Headquarters to Fort Knox, along with funding for a new elementary school. After years of partnering with Madison County families, we successfully secured approximately $2 billion for the new facility that is safely destroying chemical weapons stored at the Blue Grass Army Depot. At Fort Campbell, it has been my honor to secure vital infrastructure to support soldiers and their families, including funding for the new middle school.
These are the benefits Kentucky receives with a front row desk in the Senate. If elected, my opponent’s first vote would transfer the majority leader job from Kentucky to New York, putting Kentucky and our needs at the back of the line behind East Coast liberals.
Kentucky, the question is simple. Do you want New York setting the agenda for Kentucky? Or do you want to continue to have one of the four congressional leaders from Kentucky who is always looking out for you? That’s the question facing us. I humbly ask for your vote to ensure Kentucky keeps its front row seat.