David McCormick is running for Senate in Pennsylvania. But he lives in Connecticut
Washington (AP) – David McCormick He had a clear explanation for why his fellow Republican, Dr. Muhammad Ozhe lost an important Pennsylvania Senate seat last year: Voters viewed the daytime TV celebrity as a New Jersey interloper with limited ties to the state he hoped to represent.
“People want to know that the person they vote for ‘gets the result,’” McCormick, who narrowly lost to Oz in the Republican primary, said in March when asked to offer a posthumous defeat in the general election. To have it “is to understand that you did not come yesterday.”
The Republicans are aiming for the only seat they need to take back the Senate next year’s electionsMcCormick is a senior recruiter. And ahead of his projected campaign, he has been working to avoid Oz’s fate, often pointing to his Pennsylvania upbringing and ownership of a home in Pittsburgh and a family farm near Bloomsburg.
“I live in Pennsylvania,” McCormick said during a March appearance before the Texas senator. Ted Cruz Podcast.
But the reality is more complex. While McCormick owns a home in Pittsburgh, a review of public records, real estate listings, and footage from recent interviews indicates that he still lives on Connecticut’s “Gold Coast,” one of the densest concentrations of wealth in America. The former hedge fund CEO has rented a $16 million mansion in Westport that includes a 1,500-bottle wine cellar, an elevator, and a “private waterfront spa” overlooking Long Island Sound.
The trappings of an affluent enclave, out of Pennsylvania, present a stark contrast to the political identity McCormick sought to cultivate, emphasizing his huntsman upbringing, his military service and his desire to serve his state.
Whether voter interest will be tested again if McCormick officially launches a campaign to unseat the three-term Democratic senator. Bob Casey in the 2024 election, which will help determine partisan control of the room. The Senate’s recent history suggests that even favored sons can be traumatized when loose ties to the home country become an electoral issue.
Chris Boric, a political science professor at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, said McCormick has “more legitimate ties to Pennsylvania than Mehmet Oz.” But he questioned the decision to spend so much time out of the state, especially given the crucial role residency played in the 2022 matchup between Oz and Democratic Sen. John Fetterman.
“He spent a good portion of the time working on Wall Street and living in Connecticut,” Borick said of McCormick. “There is nothing wrong with this choice – unless you want to be a US Senator from Pennsylvania.”
He added, “As someone who realizes they’re going to have to face this, it’s questionable that you wouldn’t really dedicate yourself.”
McCormick’s spokeswoman, Elizabeth Gregory, declined to make him available for an interview, and did not say how much time he spends at his Connecticut mansion, which also includes a spa, pool, and heated suite located on a listed estate. He described it as “a summer playground for America’s wealthiest families”.
“Dave called Pennsylvania home for 30 years and served our country outside of Pennsylvania for an additional 13 years,” she said. “It’s where he mailed letters when he served in Iraq and where three of his daughters were born.”
She said, “While he maintains a residence in Connecticut as his daughters finish high school, Dave’s home is in Pittsburgh and for the past 10 years he has owned a working farm in his hometown of Bloomsburg, which has been in the family for decades.”
McCormick grew up in the town of Susquehanna River, where his father was president of the local college. The political ads emphasize a resume of high school sports, hunting, and trimming Christmas trees on his family’s farm.
His career since leaving Penn State has been considerably more gilded.
After graduating from West Point, McCormick served as an officer in the Gulf War and later earned his PhD from Princeton University. During the dotcom bubble days, McCormick served as CEO of online auction house FreeMarkets — where he amassed a fortune when he led the Pittsburgh-based company into a nearly $500 million acquisition in 2004.
He served several years in the administration of President George W. Bush, including his stint as senior deputy to then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. Next, he joined the senior executive ranks at global hedge fund giant Bridgewater Associates, eventually rising to CEO. In 2022, McCormick and his wife, former Goldman Sachs CEO Dina Powell McCormick, had a net worth that ranged from $95.7 million to at least $196.7 million, which included homes in Dallas and the Colorado Rockies, according to one candidate’s analysis. The financial disclosure he presented to the Senate last year.
Once McCormick set his sights on the United States Senate, he began making some timely adjustments.
Three months before his Senate debut in January 2022, McCormick sold his family’s $6.5 million home in Fairfield, Connecticut. That was followed by a $2.8 million purchase of a luxurious Tudor-style home in Pittsburgh’s Squirrel Hill North neighborhood, records show.
Around the same time, the Connecticut mansion, which he now lists as his home address on some public documents, was removed from the rental market.
McCormick also did not receive a tax credit for his home in Pittsburgh, which is a tax credit intended for an individual’s primary place of residence. He voted in the Pennsylvania state election for the first time in 16 years during the 2022 Republican primary, when he was on the ballot, voting records show.
When McCormick gave his concession speech after losing to Oz by more than 900 votes, he was unequivocal about where he lived.
“We’re not going anywhere. This is my home. This is our home,” McCormick said. “This is where my dreams took off, and this is where we plan to have a future.”
Meanwhile, his children went on to attend a $53,000-a-year private school in Connecticut, where one of them is still enrolled, according to the school’s website.
In January, as McCormick began looking forward to another run, he gave away his $13.4 million apartment on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. A document signed by McCormick filed in connection with the sale is documented in Westport, Connecticut, and lists the nearby beach house as his address.
This spring, McCormick took part in a series of virtual interviews from the kitchen of his home in Westport. The features featured in matching photos of the background were released publicly before the McCormix family moved on.
A $5,000 campaign contribution made in late March also lists the beachfront home as the McCormick home.
McCormick’s wealth, which he could channel to his political aspirations, makes him an attractive potential candidate to the Republican establishment in Washington, which encourages him to run again.
But it also represents an opportunity for Democrats, who will likely seize on his Wall Street ties in what is expected to once again be one of the most competitive Senate contests in the country.
“It’s all dress-up,” said JB Boersch, chief of the Senate Democrats’ television spending campaign arm. “It seems that covering up his years as a hedge fund trader is just as important as pretending to be convenient.”
Associated Press writer Marc Levy contributed from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
This article originally appeared on apnews.com