When you talk about the longest-serving senator in Kentucky history, no one else but Mitch McConnell comes to mind. He is the Senate majority leader and the second person from Kentucky to lead his party in the Senate. He is a senior US Senator and a member of the Republican party who first joined the Senate in 1984 and has since then been re-elected five times. Mitch was formerly the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee and was first elected as Majority Whip during the 108th Congress and was later re-elected again. He then became Senate Minority Leader until his party took control of the Senate which in turn made him the Senate Majority Leader.
Mitch McConnell’s Bio
Mitch was born Addison Mitchell McConnell Jr. on February 20, 1942, to parents of Scots-Irish and English descent. He was born in Sheffield, Alabama and raised in Athens. At a young age, Mitch contracted polio which cost his parents a fortune in trying to give him treatments. He finally beat the ailment and narrowly avoided being disabled for the rest of his life. He attended DuPont Manual High School and graduated with honors from the University of Louisville with a B.A. in political science in the year 1964.
Mitch became president of the Student Council of the College of Arts and Sciences and went to study law in the University of Kentucky where he also emerged the president of the Student Bar Association. Mitch McConnell was also enlisted into the U.S. Army Reserve but after a few weeks of military training, he was honorably discharged on medical grounds.
Mitch McConnell became an intern for Senator John Sherman Cooper in 1964 and also assisted Senator Marlow Cook. He rose to become Deputy Assistant Attorney General under President Gerald R. Ford. He was elected to become the Jefferson County Judge and Executive and in 1981 he was re-elected again. In 1984, Mitch began running for U.S. Senate against the Democratic incumbent, Walter Dee Huddleston, who at that time was running his second time.
Fortunately, McConnell won the election by only a thin margin of 0.4% making him the only Republican Senate challenger to win an election that year. His success was partly attributed his effective series of television campaign programs. The 1990 elections came with a tough contest against a former mayor who he defeated by 4.4%. In 1996, he defeated Steve Beshear by 12.6% again using his funny but effective television campaign programs.
In 2002 he was re-elected again winning against Lois Combs Weinberg by 29.4% which made him the Republican candidate with the largest majority in Kentucky history. Though the 2008 elections were tough for McConnell, he, however, managed to defeat Bruce Lunsford by a 6% margin. In 2014, he defeated his opponent by 56.2% to 40.7%, which gave him a victory margin of 15.5%.
For a senator who was initially known for his pragmatism and moderate ideas, he has since grown to be more liberal and progressive. Without a doubt, he is a well versed and accomplished senator had become the longest-serving Kentucky senator in US history by the year 2018.
McConnell is one of the Board of Selectors of the Jefferson Awards for Public Service. He also founded the James Madison Center for Free Speech in Washington, D.C. for legal defense. He was then inducted into the Sons of the American Revolution on March 1, 2013. Moreso, “The OpenSecrets” website has ranked Mitch McConnell as one of the wealthiest members of the U.S. Senate whose finance increased after his father-in-law gave him a gift ranging between $5 to $25 million. His net worth is currently estimated at a whopping $22.5 million.
Family – Wife and Children
Mitch McConnell got married to Sherrill Redmon in 1968 and they both had three beautiful daughters named Elly, Claire, and Porter. However, the pair separated in 1980. In 1993, he met and married Elaine Chao who was formerly the Secretary of Labor who served under the administration of George W. Bush. In November 2016, President Donald Trump appointed Elaine as Secretary of Transportation. This appointment was later confirmed by the Senate in January 2017.
Is He Gay?
Mitch McConnell is not a gay man and he is not anti-gay either like compared to most of his party members. However, his opinion about gay rights and his unwillingness to use it as a political issue during his campaigns has led to an extensive speculation that he is gay. But from further investigations, alongside the fact that he got married to a second wife after his divorce, it can be assumed that he is indeed a straight man.