Soccer star Daniel Sturridge reunited with dog after he was stolen from his LA home

Sports News Soccer star Daniel Sturridge reunited with dog after he was stolen from his LA home

Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — Soccer player Daniel Sturridge has been reunited with his dog Lucci after the black and white Pomeranian was stolen from his West Hollywood home.

Los Angeles police confirmed to KABC-TV the dog was located early Wednesday morning and police were not present when the dog was returned.

Sturridge told police he did not believe the person who returned Lucci was involved in the burglary of his house.

Sturridge, who made 18 appearances last season with Liverpool F.C. in England’s top soccer league, pleaded for the return of his beloved Lucci, who apparently was stolen from his home in the Hollywood Hills.

“I’m not even trying to find out who did it. It doesn’t matter to me. I just want the dog back,” Sturridge said in an interview with ABC News’ Good Morning America. “I know there’s a lot of dog lovers out there … dogs are considered family members.”

Sturridge discovered the pup was missing when he entered his home with his girlfriend and was alarmed that the Pomeranian did not rush to greet him. He then he noticed broken glass while walking around his kitchen.

“Walked into the house, didn’t see the dog greeting us at the door,” he told GMA, “and everyone was like, ‘Yo where’s Lucci?'”

Sturridge and his girlfriend checked upstairs and noticed that some of her bags and purses were missing.

“You know,” he added, “if you break into a house, why would you take the dog?”

Sturridge immediately took to social media and asked his 3.5 million followers to help him track down his beloved dog. The Pomeranian has his own account with over 10,000 followers.

Los Angeles police confirmed they received a call at about 1:30 a.m and that other personal property was also taken from the residence.

No arrests have been made at this time in connection to the dog napping or burglary, according to police.

Sturridge, a forward, has 76 goals and 21 assists in 218 career appearances in the English Premier League.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

ESPYS 2019: How amputee veteran turned her injury into a mission to inspire others

Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) — Kirstie Ennis was surprised when she got the call saying she would be honored at the 2019 ESPYS with the Pat Tillman Award, but was incredibly honored.

“This award to me represents community and compassion for humanity, and what people can actually make happen when they come together,” she told ABC News’ Good Morning America ahead of Wednesday night’s big show.

But to know Ennis is to know she is far more than awards and honors. A former Marine who was injured seven years ago in a helicopter crash while on duty in Afghanistan, Ennis had to work her way back from a traumatic brain injury, spine trauma and shoulder damage, not to mention the dozen or so surgeries she’s endured, one to amputate her left leg above the knee.

The 28-year-old adventure philanthropist said that she’s thought long and hard about what she will say with millions watching Wednesday night, and the common thread will be “embracing failure or hardship.”

“That can be the thing that compels us into the best years or moments of our lives,” she said. “Turning something in my case that could be really freaking awful and making it something powerful.”

‘My purpose is serving people’

Ennis admits that there were a lot of people who contributed to getting her back to the person she’s always wanted to be.

It’s this support that drives her now, and has crystallized her mission in life.

“I think it would be really selfish of me not to turn around and pay it forward,” she said.

Enter the Kirstie Ennis Foundation, which she founded a few years back to improve the quality of life for individuals and families all around the globe by raising funds for several deserving non-profit organizations.

What she does and who she helps is a long list, but a recent trek to Mount Everest in May was part of her effort to become the first female above-the-knee amputee to summit all seven of the world’s highest peaks. And all the while, she raises money for a non-profit in the U.S. and organizations wherever she is locally.

After conquering her first summit in 2017, Mount Kilimanjaro, and raising $150,000 for clean water for East Tanzania, Ennis has now finished four of the seven peaks. Her foundation has also earned close to $1 million for the causes she champions.

“I didn’t want to just do it to say look what I can do on my cool one leg. I wanted there to be heart and purpose and passion,” she said. “I consider myself one of the lucky ones who made it home. I’m broken, I’ve got scars on me, but I made it home and I can still serve people.”

“And that’s how I want to live my life,” she added.

‘I don’t want people to feel like they are alone.’

When Ennis woke up in the hospital after her injury in 2012, she admits she was the only female in the room.

“I was surrounded by a bunch of guys in the hospital and that was hard because I didn’t have anybody I could sit down and talk to,” she said. “I got hurt when I was 21 years old. I wasn’t necessary wondering if I can run again. I’m wondering, ‘Can I wear a dress again? Can I wear heels?'”

Less than a decade later, Ennis wants to be in that hospital room for another young woman trying to get a grasp on what’s happening and what’s next.

“I want to be that person for the younger generations. I don’t want people to feel like they are alone,” she added.

Ennis wants to help women and men look at their scars, their injuries, no matter how severe, and help them move forward.

“Everything that I’m doing physically or adventure-wise is for the next generation,” she continued.

While she wants to inspire, Ennis also wants to motivate others to take it one step further than even she did.

“I’m hoping someone is watching me and say, ‘I can do it better than Kirstie.’ And I hope they freaking try,” she said, laughing.

When she’s not climbing peaks, walking 1,000 miles for charity or planning to swim the English Channel, Ennis says she spends an hour a day writing letters or signing autographs for fans and young amputee children.

After being featured in the ESPN’s 2017 The Body Issue, she said the most rewarding aspect of the honor was parents reaching out saying ‘”‘Thank you for being that person for my kid.'”

“That just solidifies everything that I’m doing,” Ennis said. “I didn’t think that’s what I’d be doing 10, 11 years ago when I joined the Marine Corps, but it’s been pretty wild to watch all of it evolve.”

The 2019 ESPYS air Wednesday night at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wendy Williams reveals she has lymphedema: What to know about the condition

Robin Marchant/Getty Images for Cantor Fitzgerald(NEW YORK) — Wendy Williams revealed another hurdle in her health struggle on Monday, announcing on her talk show that she has lymphedema.

The Wendy Williams Show host revealed the diagnosis while talking about her summer vacation.

“Lymphedema, by the way, I’ve been diagnosed,” said Williams, 54. “It’s not going to kill me, but I do have a machine — and how dare you talk about the swelling of it all.”

“I’ve got it under control and if [the swelling in] my feet and lower things never go all the way down, at least I have this machine,” she said, likely referring to a compression device. “I sit for 45 minutes a day. And believe me, it’s the best party entertainer ever. Everybody who comes over wants to do this.”

Swelling in the legs and arms is a symptom of lymphedema, the build-up of fluid when the lymph system is damaged or blocked, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), a division of the National Institutes of Health.

Williams took time off from her show earlier this year after announcing she has Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disorder affecting her thyroid. She has also been open about her struggles with substance abuse, including a stay at a sober house this spring.

Williams, also in the midst of a high-profile divorce, did not share details about the cause of her lymphedema diagnosis or when she was diagnosed.

Here are some questions answered about lymphedema to help understand the condition:

What causes lymphedema?

There are two types of lymphedema — primary and secondary — which have different causes.

Primary lymphedema is caused by the abnormal development of the lymphatic system and is hereditary, according to NCI. Secondary lymphedema is caused by damage to the lymphatic system, whether through surgery to treat cancer, radiation or infection. The more lymph nodes that are affected, the greater the risk of lymphedema.

In addition to the removal or irradiation of lymph nodes, other risk factors for lymphedema include being overweight or obese, skin healing slowly after surgery and tumors that affect or block lymph nodes or vessels, according to NCI.

What are the warning signs?

The most recognizable signs of lymphedema are swelling of the arms or legs which brings a feeling of heaviness or tightness.

Typically, only one arm or leg is affected and swelling usually begins in the foot and moves up, according to Harvard Medical School.

Can lymphedema be prevented?

The risk of secondary lymphedema can be reduced by taking extra care of the arm or leg at risk, according to Harvard Medical School.

Experts advise taking precautions like avoiding heavy lifting with the arm at risk, elevating the arm or leg(s), wearing a compression stocking and avoiding having injections, IV lines or blood drawn on the arm at risk.

How is lymphedema treated?

Lymphedema has no cure but can be managed. Treatment for lymphedema is aimed at controlling the swelling it causes and preventing any other problems.

Lymphedema is typically treated through non-drug therapies like careful skin care to prevent infection, bandaging, massage therapy and physical therapy, according to NCI.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

‘Mulan’ teaser-trailer draws 175 million-plus views in its first 24 hours

Entertainment News  'Mulan' teaser-trailer draws 175 million-plus views in its first 24 hours


Disney(NEW YORK) — The first teaser-trailer for Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of its 1998 animated classic Mulan, which debuted Sunday during Fox’s broadcast of the U.S. women’s soccer team’s victory over the Netherlands in the FIFA Women’s World Cup, logged more than 175 million global online views over its first 24 hours, according to Deadline.

It now ranks the second-most-viewed trailer for a Disney live-action film over that time period, behind the trailer for The Lion King, which recorded 224 million hits when it dropped back in November.

Mulan is also the seventh-largest trailer launch of all time over that same period, joining the ranks of Avengers: Endgame, Avengers: Infinity War, Lion King, IT and Fate of the Furious, among others.

Chinese-American actress Liu Yifei plays the title character in Mulan, about a young woman who disguises herself as a man to fight in place of her elderly and ailing father when he’s called to join the Chinese military to fight invaders attacking the country.

The animated Mulan grossed $120 million in North America and $304 million worldwide.

Donnie Yen, Jason Scott Lee, Yoson An, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Ron Yuan, Tzi Ma, Rosalind Chao, Cheng Pei-Pei, Nelson Lee, Chum Ehelepola, Gong Li and Jet Li also star in Mulan, slated for a 2020 release.

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

UK ambassador to the US quits over leaked cables criticizing Trump

WORLD NEWS UK ambassador to the US quits over leaked cables criticizing Trump

Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Capitol File Magazine(LONDON) — The U.K. ambassador to the United States has quit in the midst of a scandal caused by comments he made about President Donald Trump that were leaked to the British media.

In the leaked cables, Kim Darroch allegedly called Trump “inept” and “uniquely dysfunctional,” according to a report from the Daily Mail published Sunday.

Ambassador Darroch announced his resignation after Trump dialed up his criticism of the diplomat on Tuesday, calling him “wacky” and “a very stupid guy.”

In a letter to the U.K. Foreign Office announcing his resignation, Darroch said that the “current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role.”

“Since the leak of official documents from this Embassy there has been a great deal of speculation surrounding my position and the duration of my remaining term as ambassador,” he wrote. “I want to put an end to that speculation. The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like. Although my posting is not due to end until the end of this year, I believe in the current circumstances the responsible course is to allow the appointment of a new ambassador.”

In response to Darroch’s letter, Sir Simon McDonald, Permanent Under Secretary at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, said the former ambassador had been the target of a “malicious leak.”

“I want to stress my deep appreciation for all you have done over the last four decades,” he wrote. “In a series of demanding roles – including National Security Adviser and Permanent Representative to the European Union – you have loyally served the government of the day without fear or favour. We have been lucky to have you as a friend and colleague. You are the best of us.”

Darroch had been dis-invited from a dinner Monday night with the president at the Treasury Department in honor of the emir of Qatar, according to a U.S. official. White House officials said this is an example of the kind of treatment Darroch will likely receive in the aftermath of the leak.

Prior to his resignation, a spokesperson for Prime Minister Theresa May said that Darroch retained the government’s “full support.”

May told the U.K. Parliament that she had spoken with Darroch Wednesday morning, and his resignation was a matter of “deep regret.”

“I told him that it is a matter of deep regret the he felt it necessary to resign his position as ambassador to Washington,” she said. May also seemed to give an implicit criticism of President Trump, referring to the importance of “defending out values and principles, particularly when they are under pressure.”

On Tuesday, Boris Johnson, who is widely tipped to replace May as prime minister of the United Kingdom at the end of this month, refused to say whether Darroch would continue to serve as ambassador if he were in power.

Alan Duncan, a minister for the Foreign Office, told Sky News that Johnson had “thrown him under the bus” and that he was “absolutely livid.”

Jeremy Hunt, the current Foreign Secretary and Johnson’s rival contender in the race to become the next prime minister, said that he was “deeply saddened” to hear of Darroch’s resignation.

“Deeply saddened to hear of the resignation of Sir Kim Darroch,” Hunt posted in a tweet. “Standing up for Britain means standing up for the finest diplomats on the world. It should never have come to this.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

Support for legal abortion matches its 24-year high: Poll

Political News Support for legal abortion matches its 24-year high: Poll

Casimiro/iStock(NEW YORK) — Sixty percent of Americans say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, the most in ABC News/Washington Post polls since 1995. More also say their state should make it easier, rather than harder, for women to have access to abortion, with a plurality favoring no change in the status quo.

Most of the change in support for legal abortion is among Americans who say it should be legal “in all cases,” now 27%, matching the high 24 years ago and up 11 percentage points from its low in early 2007. An additional 33% say it should be legal in most cases in this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates.

See a PDF with full results, charts and tables from the poll.

The rest, 36%, say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, down from 45% as recently as 2010 and a high of 48% in 2001. This includes 14% who say abortion should be illegal in all cases, about half as many as say it always should be legal.

While support for legal abortion now matches its high in fall 1995, trends since then have not been consistent. The long-term average, in 32 ABC/Post polls over this period, is 55%, compared with today’s 60%.

In terms of state-level action, 41% say laws on women’s access to abortion should be left as they are now. Thirty-two percent say access to abortion should be easier than it is now, for a total of 73% favoring either no change or fewer restrictions. Twenty-four percent say abortion access should be harder. (In an ABC/Post poll last summer, 30% said they would like to see the Supreme Court make it harder to get an abortion, down from 42% in 2005.)

At least 11 states have passed more restrictive abortion laws in recent months, of which six have been stayed by court orders. Six other states have moved in the opposite direction, enacting laws to ensure or expand abortion access.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

Judge blocks DOJ motion to withdraw legal team on census case

Political News Judge blocks DOJ motion to withdraw legal team on census case

WildandFree/iStock(NEW YORK) — The federal judge overseeing the census case in the Southern District of New York has blocked the government’s motion to withdraw its team of lawyers who had been working on the case previously.

Judge Jesse Furman’s order doesn’t block the new team of lawyers from entering the case, but he says the Department of Justice must provide “satisfactory reasons” for its surprise decision to withdraw the previous team.

“Defendants provide no reasons, let alone “satisfactory reasons,” for the substitution of counsel,” Furman wrote in the ruling. “And as to the second factor, Defendants’ mere “expect[ation] that withdrawal of current counsel will [not] cause any disruption” is not good enough, particularly given the circumstances of this case.”

Notably, the judge puts the government’s own arguments prior to the Supreme Court’s ruling against them, where it had repeatedly called for expediting the case in order to resolve the citizenship question dispute and get the census printed.

“If anything, that urgency — and the need for efficient judicial proceedings — has only grown since that time,” Furman said.

The DOJ declined to comment on this decision.

President Donald Trump issued his reaction on Twitter on Tuesday night.

In a statement, the ACLU said, “The Justice Department owes the public and the courts an explanation for its unprecedented substitution of the entire legal team that has been working on this case.”

The Justice Department’s announcement about the changing legal team heightened speculation that there have been concerns among members of the original legal team tasked with carrying out Trump’s demands to include the citizenship question, despite a recent Supreme Court ruling blocking the move. When Trump last week demanded that the department reverse course after it conceded the 2020 census would not include the citizenship question, the government’s lawyers struggled to explain a path forward when pressed by a federal judge.

Last week, the Commerce Department announced that the census had started printing without inclusion of the question, and the administration has stressed that printing process would continue through the ongoing legal fight. Officials have suggested that if the government is able to prevail in court that the question could be added as some sort of addendum.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

Judges grill Obamacare defenders over individual mandate

Political News Judges grill Obamacare defenders over individual mandate

Minerva Studio/iStock(NEW ORLEANS) — The fight to save the Affordable Care Act met stiff resistance on Tuesday from a panel of federal appeals court judges, who questioned whether the law’s command that Americans buy health insurance is constitutional.

The hearing sets the stage for a major decision later this summer that could impact health care benefits for millions of Americans and supercharge debate over the law in the heat of the 2020 campaign.

The Supreme Court in 2012 said the individual mandate — which orders Americans to obtain health coverage or face a financial penalty — is only permissible under Congress’ power to tax. But in 2017, the Republican-led Congress zeroed out the penalty, effectively making it a blanket government order.

Late last year, a U.S. District Court judge said that order alone is unconstitutional and inseparable from the rest of the law, invalidating the entire thing.

“Why is a command not a command?” Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod said as she pressed attorney Samuel Siegel, who is representing 20 Democrat-led states defending the ACA. “If this is no longer a tax, then what happens?”

“Then there are no legal consequences for going without health care coverage,” Siegel said.

“You are violating the law,” Elrod interjected.

For nearly two hours in a New Orleans courtroom, the judges — two Republican appointees and one by Democratic President Jimmy Carter — voiced skepticism about arguments that the individual mandate is now essentially just a toothless government suggestion.

“Congress could have included a severability clause when it adopted the Affordable Care Act in 2010, but it seems like it did the opposite,” said Judge Kurt Englehart, a President Donald Trump appointee, pointing out that drafters of the law considered the individual mandate an essential component.

“You are instructed to save everything [in the law] you can unless it’s evident that Congress would not have meant that, would have preferred no statute,” countered attorney Doug Letter, arguing on behalf of the Democrat-led U.S. House of Representatives.

Letter argued that Congress in 2017 made clear it wants to keep most of Obamacare in place, even while zeroing out the mandate. He pointed to lawmakers’ multiple votes to keep the law despite Republican opposition.

“Texas says, ‘Aha! Caught you. You just did something unconstitutional. You left the mandate in place and put the tax at zero.’ But there’s another way to read it,” Letter argued. “[Congress] hasn’t done anything unconstitutional. [It] made the tax zero. Again, everybody agrees congress has the power to do that.”

Legal analysts see three possible outcomes in the appeals case: the court could affirm the lower court ruling, striking down the individual mandate and the entire ACA as unconstitutional; it could invalidate the mandate alone and sever it from the rest of the law, leaving much of the ACA in place; or it could leave the law functioning as-is.

“As it stands today, the Affordable Care Act presents a stand-alone command to buy an insurance product that the federal government deems suitable and it does so without raising even a dime of revenue,” argued Texas solicitor general Kyle Hawkins. “The text of the ACA declares that mandate essential to the law and the goals that Congress wanted to achieve. “

Hawkins, representing 18 states including Texas, backed by the Trump administration, said the entire law needs to be thrown out.

“It’s not this court’s role to act as a legislature and cut sections out of a statute that Congress has had an opportunity to amend but has not done so,” Hawkins said.

Regardless of the decision, both sides expect an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, which could hear the case sometime in 2020, if the justices decide to take it up.

If the Affordable Care Act is entirely invalidated, Americans would no longer receive protections for preexisting conditions, free preventive benefits coverage in all plans, mandatory acceptance of children on their parents’ plans up to age 26, premium subsidies to buy policies on the exchange and greater access to Medicaid in dozens of states.

“Today we saw an administration pressed to explain why affordable care, and American lives, should be put at risk,” said California Attorney General Xavier Beccera, who is leading defense of the law. “If they have their way, millions of Americans could be forced to delay, skip or forego potentially life-saving health care.”

Industry groups and independent health care analysts say wiping out Obamacare without an alternative would mean a highly disruptive shift in the health care of millions of Americans.

The Affordable Care Act has sharply reduced the number of uninsured Americans since 2010, covering 20 million more people than if the law had not taken effect, according to the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation.

An estimated 52 million Americans have preexisting health conditions that insurers could have denied coverage to under pre-ACA rules in most states, the foundation said.

There is not currently a viable alternative to the law that can pass the House and Senate and get signed into law by Trump. Republicans were unsuccessful at repealing and replacing the law in 2017 when they controlled both chambers and the White House.

Trump told ABC News in June that he will be unveiling a “phenomenal” health care plan within the next two months.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

Trump’s Fourth of July event cost Pentagon $1.2 million

Political News Trump's Fourth of July event cost Pentagon $1.2 million

Stephanie Keith/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — The Pentagon estimates it cost $1.2 million for the military’s participation in the July Fourth “Salute to America,” which included flyovers by military aircraft and the presence of Abrams tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles by the Lincoln Memorial.

During the Salute to America event on the National Mall, President Donald Trump highlighted the accomplishments of the military services individually and the specific aircraft representing each service. Participating in those flyovers were Air Force F-22 Raptor fighters and a B-2 Spirit bomber, Army Apache helicopters, Marine MV-22 Ospreys, Navy F-35C Lightning II fighters and F/A-18 Hornets and Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk and MH-65 Dolphin helicopters.

One of the Boeing 747’s used as Air Force One and the new VH-92 Sikorsky helicopter that will serve as Marine One also joined the flyover. Then a flight demonstration from the Navy’s elite Blue Angels flight demonstration team concluded the event.

The $1.2 million does not include the cost of the military flyovers, which were absorbed in the individual military services’ training budgets.

“The Department of Defense supported the ‘Salute to America’ with demonstrations by aircraft, static displays of equipment and ceremonial unit participation,” according to a statement from the Pentagon’s Comptroller’s Office. “Additional funding was used for the transportation of static displays and equipment. The total cost of the Department’s support to the ‘Salute to America’ event was $1.2 million.”

Most of the aircraft conducted round trip flights to Washington from their home bases, including the Air Force B-2 that flew from its base in Missouri. The two Navy F-35 aircraft flew the longest distance to the nation’s capital from their base in Lemoore, California the day before the event to participate.

But ahead of the ceremony it was the Army’s movement of two Abrams M1A2 tanks and two M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles from the 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, Georgia, that garnered the most attention.

Addressing criticism that the military’s participation in the event would present an excessive cost, the Pentagon provided costs associated with other events nationwide.

That includes the $1.8 million it costs for the Navy to hold Fleet Week in San Francisco and the $2.5 million associated with Fleet Week in New York.

According to the Pentagon’s figures, the Blue Angels have conducted 47 flyovers in fiscal year 2019 at a cost of $36 million.

The day after the event, Trump told reporters that he expected military recruiting numbers to increase as a result of the event, designed to salute the Armed Forces.

“You’re going to have a lot of people being recruited, I think, based on that,” he said. “And I think, really, that you’re going to see a big spike. I’ve already heard it — a lot of people calling in. No place like our military. I think we showed that last night.”

However, measuring the potential impacts of the event on military recruiting may not be seen for a while.

“As the decision to join the military and the enlistment process takes an extended period of time, the Department is unable to directly attribute the impact of a single event or a specific day to a decision to join the military,” said Jessica Maxwell, a Pentagon spokesperson.

“The only exception in recent history surrounds the events of Sept. 11, 2001, when there was an increase in the number of individuals who expressed a desire to serve; however, unfortunately many of those individuals were not qualified and the trend was short-lived,” she added.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019

Democrat Amy McGrath launches bid for Kentucky Senate, hopes to unseat McConnell

Political News Democrat Amy McGrath launches bid for Kentucky Senate, hopes to unseat McConnell

Jason Davis/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Amy McGrath, a former fighter pilot who unsuccessfully ran for Congress in 2018, launched a Senate bid on Tuesday, hoping to be the Democratic nominee to take on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in the 2020 election.

“(McConnell) has bit by bit, year by year, turned Washington into something we all despise, where dysfunction and chaos are political weapons, where budgets and health care and the Supreme Court are held hostage, a place where ideals go to die,” McGrath said in the video announcing her candidacy. “I’m running for Senate because it shouldn’t be like this.”

A retired U.S. Marine Corps lieutenant colonel, McGrath made a name for herself as one of the many female veterans running for Congress for the first time in 2018. She lost her race against Rep. Andy Barr, the incumbent for Kentucky’s 6th Congressional District, but this cycle, she wants to unseat one of the biggest names in politics.

In her announcement video, McGrath, a born and raised Kentuckian, tells the story of when she wrote to her senator at 13 years old, during a time when women weren’t allowed to have combat roles in the military, to tell him she wanted to be a fighter pilot, and that “women should be able to do that.”

Her senator — McConnell — never responded, she said.

McGrath briefly shared this story in the video launching her 2018 House campaign, too, but this announcement video also highlights other constituents who wrote letters to McConnell and said they heard nothing back.

Pat Roberts, a steel worker, who worked at a mill that shut down, losing his job. Ann Young, a diabetic “who fears losing her health care and coverage for her pre-existing conditions.” Jimmy Guess, a coal miner who had to retire after getting black lung disease. Kendall Russell, a student who needs federal loans to go to college, but doesn’t know how she’ll pay them off.

“Everything that’s wrong in Washington had to start someplace,” McGrath says. “Well, it started with this man, who was elected a lifetime ago.”

Asked about McGrath’s announcement on Capitol Hill Tuesday afternoon, McConnell said he enjoys campaigning and that it would be a “spirited race.”

“I look forward to the contest and laying out our differences to the people of Kentucky,” he said.

McConnell’s campaign tweeted out a response to McGrath’s announcement, writing, “Welcome to the race, Amy,” with a video focusing on McGrath’s more liberal policy stances on issues like immigration, health care and reproductive rights, that ends by asserting she’s “too liberal for Kentucky.”

The video also features McGrath’s words along with photos of prominent Democratic politicians, like congressional leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, two of the many Democratic candidates vying to take on President Donald Trump in the 2020 election.

In response to the McConnell campaign’s video, Mark Nickolas, McGrath’s campaign manager, told ABC News, “Before Mitch McConnell uses a hacked up recording to attack Amy, he should explain … why he colluded with Governor Bevin in Kentucky to take health care away from hundreds of thousands of Kentuckians. We can’t drain the swamp if the swamp turtle sits on top of the drain.”

Appearing on MSNBC Tuesday morning, McGrath recognized McConnell as a “very formidable” politician, but said that in 2016, Kentuckians voted for Trump because the president “promised to bring back jobs” and lower drug prices.

“The things that Kentuckians voted for Trump for are not being done,” McGrath said. “He’s not able to get it done because of Sen. McConnell.”

On Twitter late Tuesday, Trump asked, “Why would Kentucky ever think of giving up the most powerful position in Congress, the Senate Majority Leader, for a freshman SEnator with little power in what will hopefully be the minority party. We need Mitch in the Senate to Keep America Great!!”

McGrath will have to win the Democratic nomination to have the opportunity to face McConnell. Health care professional Steven Cox and mental health counselor Jimmy Ausbrooks are also seeking the nomination.

However, on day one of her campaign, she’s already snagged a congressional endorsement. Presidential candidate Massachusetts Rep. Seth Moulton, a Marine Corps combat veteran of the Iraq War, tweeted that “she’s the right person to beat Mitch McConnell.”

And two senators running for president tweeted support for McGrath’s campaign.

Massachusetts’ Elizabeth Warren said in a tweet that McGrath “is a real fighter for working families in Kentucky,” adding, “Go Amy!” Minnesota’s Amy Klobuchar wrote, “From one Amy to another, we need you here!”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 10 Jul 2019