Martha McSally Biography

(Former United States Senator for Arizona)

Birthday: March 22, 1966 (Aries)

Born In: Warwick, Rhode Island, United States

Martha Elizabeth McSally is a former military pilot turned politician who served as a United States senator for Arizona. She held the office from 2019 to 2020. Prior to becoming a senator, she was the United States representative for Arizona's 2nd congressional district. Born to a middle-class family in Rhode Island, she had a difficult childhood as her father died when she was very young. Her mother struggled to raise Martha and her siblings by herself. Martha was a good student and was the valedictorian at her school. She later joined the United States Air Force Academy and graduated with a degree in biology. She furthered her studies at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government before joining pilot training. She worked as a military pilot for several years and became the first United States woman to fly in combat before retiring and returning to civilian life. She then ventured into politics and was elected to the House of Representatives in 2014. She was endorsed by then-President Donald Trump in her 2018 Senate campaign. Long-time US senator John McCain died in 2018, and McSally succeeded him as the senator, taking office in early 2019. Her tenure ended in 2020.

Quick Facts

Also Known As: Martha Elizabeth McSally

Age: 56 Years, 56 Year Old Females


Spouse/Ex-: Donald F. Henry (m. 1997–1999)

father: Bernard

mother: Eleanor

Born Country: United States

Political Leaders American Women

Height: 5'3" (160 cm), 5'3" Females

Notable Alumni: United States Air Force Academy

U.S. State: Rhode Island

More Facts

education: Harvard University, United States Air Force Academy

Childhood & Early Life

Martha McSally was born on March 22, 1966, in Warwick, Rhode Island, United States, to Bernard and Eleanor. She has four older siblings. Her father, a lawyer, suffered a massive heart attack and died when Martha was just 12. Her mother worked as a reading specialist and raised the five children by herself.

Martha was a good student who excelled in her studies. She was the valedictorian at her school, St. Mary Academy, Bay View, in 1984. She then joined the United States Air Force Academy, from where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biology.

She enrolled at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government and received her master’s degree in public policy. During this time, she decided to become a pilot and proceeded to pilot training.

In 1991, she completed her Undergraduate Pilot Training at Williams Air Force Base and earned her USAF pilot's wings.

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Military Career

Martha McSally was assigned to Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, after her graduation in 1991. She was a First Assignment Instructor Pilot and was promoted to Lead-in Fighter Training in 1993.

At Davis–Monthan Air Force Base, she completed Replacement Training Unit for the A-10 Thunderbolt II. In 1995, she was assigned to an operational A-10 squadron in Kuwait. She flew combat patrol over Iraq as part of Operation Southern Watch, thus becoming the first woman fighter pilot from US to command a fighter squadron.

She was deployed to Europe in 1999. Sent in support of Operation Allied Force, she was chosen for the Legislative Fellowship Program. She worked as a national security advisor to Senator Jon Kyl.

In 2004, she was made in charge of the 354th Fighter Squadron at Davis–Monthan Air Force Base. She was later deployed to Afghanistan under Operation Enduring Freedom. She retired from the United States Air Force in 2010.

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Political Career

Martha McSally ran for a seat in the House of Representatives from Arizona’s 8th congressional district in 2012. Her bid was unsuccessful. She ran for the elections again in 2014 and was elected this time, becoming the first female Republican representative from Arizona. She was re-elected in 2016.

She announced her candidacy for the US Senate seat in 2018, shortly after the retirement of US Senator Jeff Flake. On August 25, 2018, long-time US senator John McCain died and his appointed successor, Senator Jon Kyl, resigned.

Martha McSally was sworn in as a United States senator on January 3, 2019. Her appointment was considered controversial, and John McCain's daughter Meghan criticized her saying that McSally “didn’t earn” this appointment.

As a senator, she voted for the Strengthening America's Security in the Middle East Act of 2019. She also voted to confirm William Barr as attorney general and Andrew Wheeler as EPA administrator. 

An ardent supporter of President Donald Trump, she voted to acquit him of articles of impeachment on charges of obstruction of Congress and abuse of power. She praised Trump for the way he responded to the Covid-19 pandemic crisis.

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Her tenure as a senator ended on December 2, 2020.
Political Stances
Martha McSally is pro-life. In 2018, she said that she is against abortion in nearly all cases, except for rape, incest, and risk to the mother’s life. She once voted for a 20-week abortion ban and voted to defund Planned Parenthood.
She opposed the Raise the Wage Act which proposed raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. She also supported the repeal of the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931. This act states that laborers and mechanics should be paid the locally prevailing wages for public works projects.
She introduced legislation to reduce funding for US military bands and criticized the international nuclear agreement with Iran. She was in favor of the indefinite detentions at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp and was against President Obama’s attempts to close the camp.
She opposed the Affordable Care Act, also known as "Obamacare." She was in support of a revised version of the American Health Care Act and advocated the passage of the Community Health Investment, Modernization, and Excellence (CHIME) Act.
She is against the idea of same-sex marriage. When the US Supreme Court upheld a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, she said that she would respect the Supreme Court’s decision. She refused to take a position on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which states certain rules regarding workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
She opposes net neutrality and called for the repeal of the Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet Order. Along with then-Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, she co-sponsored the Broadband Consumer Privacy Proposal, which called for repealing the FCC's internet privacy rules.
Family & Personal Life
Martha McSally married Air Force officer Donald Frederick Henry in 1997. The marriage was annulled in 1999.
During a hearing on Sexual Assault and Misconduct in the Military in 2019, she told her colleagues that she was raped by a superior officer while serving in the Air Force. Terrified after the incident, she couldn’t muster the courage to report him. She said that she was disgusted at the failure of the military system to address sexual violence.

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