Kentucky’s Only Democrat in Congress: Primary Against McGrath ‘Might Be Helpful’

Yarmuth called McGrath's Kavanaugh answer a 'pretty significant' error

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 20: Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY), speaks during a weekly press conference in the Capitol building on July 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Yarmuth spoke to the media about the efforts to reform the health care bill. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Rep. John Yarmuth, the only Kentucky Democrat in Congress, chimed in Thursday on Senate candidate Amy McGrath's "pretty significant" error in publicly admitting she would have supported the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court last fall.

Yarmuth spoke to the Courier-Journal, a Lousiville-based newspaper, about McGrath's campaign launch and said he hopes she prepares for interviews better in the future.

He went on to admit that a Democratic primary "might be helpful" to help the eventual Democratic candidate defeat Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.).

"I think a primary might be helpful in this situation," Yarmuth said. "Because whoever is going to face off against Mitch McConnell really needs to get their game in shape. Certainly Amy would be a favorite in any kind of primary, but I think it would help her and if somebody else could beat her they would have demonstrated their strength as well."

McGrath sparked backlash from progressives on Wednesday after she said she would have supported the confirmation of Kavanaugh, prompting her to eventually reverse her position due to pressure.

"I was asked earlier today about Judge Brett Kavanaugh and I answered based upon his qualifications to be on the Supreme Court. But upon further reflection and further understanding of his record, I would have voted no," McGrath tweeted. "I know I disappointed many today with my initial answer on how I would have voted on Brett Kavanaugh. I will make mistakes and always own up to them. The priority is defeating Mitch McConnell."

During McGrath's unsuccessful congressional run last year against Rep. Andy Barr (R., Ky.), she criticized Kavanaugh on Facebook, saying he was "among the most partisan people ever considered for the Court."

"I echo so many of the concerns that others have articulated over the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court," McGrath began. "He has shown himself to be against women’s reproductive rights, workers’ rights, consumer protections, and will be among the most partisan people ever considered for the Court. Apparently, he will fall to the right of Gorsuch and Alito on ideology, and just to the left of the arch conservative Thomas. Kavanaugh will likely be confirmed and we are starkly reminded, again, that elections have consequences, and this consequence will be with us for an entire generation."