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Cawthorn, who backed Cheney, now calls for her ouster

If there were a political Olympics, Madison Cawthorn would surely be a contender for a gold medal in back-flipping. In advance of this week’s House GOP vote on its leadership team, the 25-year-old congressman from Western North Carolina executed a perfect reverse somersault on Liz Cheney, whom he had supported for the GOP’s leadership just three months ago — only to run into a buzz saw of criticism from his far-right base on his Madison Cawthorn Chat channel on Telegram.  

Last week, apparently chastened, Cawthorn posted a broadside attack headlined LIZ CHENEY MUST GO. He implied that his reason for flipping was that Cheney had fist-bumped President Biden when he entered the House chamber for a joint address to Congress last month. Cawthorn also urged readers to donate to his 2022 reelection campaign.

Rep. Madison Cawthorn posted this May 8 on Telegram

Cawthorn has also back-flipped since telling CNN anchor Pamela Brown in January that “the election wasn’t fraudulent” and that “Joseph R. Biden is our President.” He also joined 16 other GOP freshmen in signing a letter to President Biden expressing willingness to work with the Democratic administration in the “hope we can rise above the partisan fray.”  

His Telegram followers booed him. Cawthorn has now reverted to calling the election “stolen,” writes that Donald and Melania Trump are still President and First Lady, vows to support “President Trump’s agenda,” and refers to President Biden and Vice President Harris simply as “Joe” and “Kamala.” 

As for rising above the partisan fray, Cawthorn has voted against every proposal brought forward by Democrats, including his vote against pandemic relief programs and broadband expansion for Western North Carolina. — Tom Fiedler

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