Madison Cawthorn’s Response to Orgy Scandal: Attack the Liberals

And the media, and the “swamp.”

Tom Williams/ZUMA

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Madison Cawthorn just can’t stop embarrassing himself.

Fresh from angering Republican leaders—and raising the concern of their spouses—with his claims of drug-fueled sex parties, the 26-year-old congressman is now apparently hoping to rehabilitate his standing within the GOP by redirecting the scorn, naturally, toward liberals and the media.

“My comments on a recent podcast appearance calling out corruption have been used by the left and the media to disparage my Republican colleagues and falsely insinuate their involvement in illicit activities,” Cawthorn said in a lengthy statement on Friday, which did not apologize for his behavior.

He went on to rail nonsensically about the “swamp” and corruption in Washington, DC. The left and the media, he said, seek to use the “controversy” to divide Republicans. But “I will not back down to the mob, and I will not let them win.” 

Reflexively pointing the finger at the dreaded “left” is a tired GOP tactic. But even by Republican standards, Cawthorn’s suggestion that his on the record remarks are being taken out of context for political gain is something to behold. Even his own party has placed the blame squarely on Cawthorn and no one else. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy—who appeared more shaken by Cawthorn’s podcast oopsy than when members of his caucus were recently seen hobnobbing with white supremacists—stated his take pretty clearly:

“I just told him he’s lost my trust…I told him you can’t make statements like that, as a member of Congress, that affect everybody else and the country as a whole.” 

Will Cawthorn’s supporters see through his weak attempt at misdirection? Well, with North Carolina Republicans reportedly putting more weight behind Cawthorn’s primary opponent in the wake of his latest embarrassment, we’ll see soon enough.

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Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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