Connecticut Millionaire Plans to Run for US Senate in Pennsylvania

Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, Dave McCormick and his wife Dina Powell greet supporters as he arrives for his returns watch party in the Pennsylvania primary election, Tuesday, May 17, 2022, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

By Sean Kitchen

August 14, 2023

“[Dave McCormick] spent a big chunk of time working for Wall Street and living in Connecticut. There’s nothing wrong with that choice – unless you want to be a US senator from Pennsylvania,” said Chris Borick from Muhlenberg College.

Dave McCormick is gearing up for a second campaign for the United States Senate in Pennsylvania, hoping to unseat Democratic Sen. Bob Casey in the 2024 general election.

There’s only one potential problem: McCormick still appears to be living in Connecticut.

In a story published Monday, the Associated Press highlighted McCormick’s lavish lifestyle on Connecticut’s “Gold Coast,” where he lived from 2009 to 2021, before establishing residency in Pennsylvania to mount an unsuccessful campaign in last year’s GOP Senate primary.

The AP describes the Gold Coast as “one of the densest concentrations of wealth in America,” and local real estate listings describe the community as a “summer playground of America’s wealthiest families.”

McCormick rents a $16 million mansion in Westport that includes a 1,500-bottle wine cellar, an elevator, and a “private waterfront resort” overlooking Long Island Sound. At least one of McCormick’s children also continues to attend a $53,000-a-year Connecticut private school, according to the AP.

This lifestyle is funded by a level of wealth that most people can only dream of. McCormick and his wife Dina Powell McCormick, a former Goldman Sachs executive and Trump administration official, hold a net worth of between $95.7 million and at least $196.7 million, according to a financial disclosure he filed with the Senate last year.

McCormick made much of his fortune while serving as the president of Westport-based Bridgewater Associates, one of the world’s biggest hedge funds, from 2009 to 2020, and later as its president, from 2020 to 2022.

McCormick does have roots in Pennsylvania, growing up outside of Bloomsburg while his father served as president of a local university, but his connections to the Keystone State are hazy at best.

The former hedge fund manager owns a Christmas tree farm outside of the college town and bought a $2.8 million house in Pittsburgh’s Squirrel Hill neighborhood months prior to the 2022 primary campaign. On top of that, voter records show that McCormick didn’t vote in a Pennsylvania election in the 16 years prior to his 2022 campaign against Dr. Oz.

The AP reported that McCormick held virtual interviews from his Westport home as recently as this spring and “distinguishing features in the background match pictures that were posted publicly before the McCormicks moved in.”

If this sounds familiar, that’s because it is. While running for US Senate, the Fetterman campaign caught Dr. Oz recording a campaign video from his home in New Jersey. At the time, Fetterman tweeted “Pro tip: don’t film an ad for your PA senate campaign from your mansion in New Jersey.”

Chris Borick, a political science professor at Muhlenberg College, told the AP that McCormick has “more legitimate connections to Pennsylvania than Oz,” but went on to say “[McCormick] spent a big chunk of time working for Wall Street and living in Connecticut. There’s nothing wrong with that choice – unless you want to be a US senator from Pennsylvania.”

 

Author

  • Sean Kitchen

    Sean Kitchen is the Keystone’s political correspondent, based in Harrisburg. Sean is originally from Philadelphia and spent five years working as a writer and researcher for Pennsylvania Spotlight.

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