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Fri May 13, 2022, 04:50 PM

'He's Not OK': The Entirely Predictable Unraveling of Madison Cawthorn

Last edited Wed May 18, 2022, 11:00 AM - Edit history (1)

Analysis, not news. Long piece.

Hat tip, Newser, the clickbait site

I wouldn't trade places with this guy for anything. Still, he's picking up a paycheck in return for ... what?

‘He’s Not OK’: The Entirely Predictable Unraveling of Madison Cawthorn

A string of embarrassing incidents has led many to question whether the young congressman from North Carolina was really ready for the job.

By MICHAEL KRUSE

05/13/2022 04:30 AM EDT

Michael Kruse is a senior staff writer at POLITICO and POLITICO Magazine.

HENDERSONVILLE, N.C. — In August of 2015, 16 months after the accident that nearly killed him and left him unable to walk, Madison Cawthorn exchanged text messages with the friend who had fallen asleep at the wheel and careened into a concrete wall. Brad Ledford was about to head off to college. Cawthorn was living with his parents in a house that had been renovated for his wheelchair. He was suing Ledford and Ledford’s father’s business for millions of dollars of medical bills. Phone to phone, the teens bantered back and forth about getting together, but after a while it was clear Cawthorn didn’t want to.

Ledford referenced “the tension” of the court case and lamented they couldn’t hang out “the way we used to.” ... “I miss everything,” Ledford said. ... “I miss everything too,” Cawthorn shot back, unleashing one long, raw message, screens and screens of anguish and loss. ... “I miss my life,” he said. “I miss being able to defend myself … being able to dress myself … being able to use the bathroom without someone helping me … I miss not peeing the bed because I have no control over my penis … not having to have pills keep me alive … being able to compete … being checked out by girls … I miss my pride as a man … the pride my father swelled with when he spoke my name … I miss,” he said, “not having to convince myself every day not to pull the trigger and end it all.”

Four and a half years after Cawthorn contemplated suicide, he was running for Congress. Turning a stirring story of conquering adversity into a shocking political victory, he achieved his most ambitious career goal at a staggeringly early age. And within weeks if not days of being sworn in — at 25 years old one of the youngest members in the history of the House — he had put himself on a short list of the chamber’s most known figures. Now, though, heading into his first reelection, Cawthorn is mired in controversy, facing the very real possibility that the end of his electoral career might come as quickly as it began. Emboldened by Cawthorn’s miscues, misdeeds and array of indiscretions, seven Republican challengers have lined up to try to take him out in Tuesday’s primary, party leaders have abandoned him, and other MAGA firebrands are keeping their distance what with the escalating storm of even just the past few months.

{snip}

The scope of Cawthorn’s troubles is broad, the implications transcending mere politics. More than 70 interviews with people who know Cawthorn, who have worked for him and against him, allies and enemies, activists and operatives and longtime watchers of politics here in the mountains of western North Carolina, paint a picture of a man in crisis. Cawthorn, they say, is an immature college dropout with a thin work resume, a scofflaw and serial embellisher who was neither qualified nor prepared for the responsibility and the scrutiny that comes with the office he holds. They describe him as a person whose ongoing physical pain and insecurities have made him unusually susceptible to the twisted incentives of a political environment and a Trump-led GOP that prizes perhaps above all else outrage and partisan attack.

{snip}

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Reply 'He's Not OK': The Entirely Predictable Unraveling of Madison Cawthorn (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves May 13 OP
mahatmakanejeeves May 13 #1
Girard442 May 13 #2
Funtatlaguy May 13 #4
Hekate May 13 #9
vlyons May 13 #3
Beartracks May 13 #6
keithbvadu2 May 13 #5
OldBaldy1701E May 13 #8
3Hotdogs May 13 #7

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri May 13, 2022, 04:59 PM

1. "My hope is that North Carolina-11 will deal with it."

https://twitter.com/michaelkruse

“My hope is that North Carolina-11 will deal with it.”

cnn.com
GOP looks to marginalize Cawthorn if he wins Tuesday primary
Republicans are publicly and privately rooting for Rep. Madison Cawthorn to lose his North Carolina primary race on Tuesday. But


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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri May 13, 2022, 05:02 PM

2. A different person might have lifted himself above his personal tragedy...

...through service to others. Emulating Donald Trump isn't going to do it for him. Arguably, it didn't work so well for Trump himself.

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Response to Girard442 (Reply #2)

Fri May 13, 2022, 05:27 PM

4. Max Cleland, for example.

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Response to Funtatlaguy (Reply #4)

Fri May 13, 2022, 11:20 PM

9. Or Tammy Duckworth

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri May 13, 2022, 05:16 PM

3. He could have made other choices

Kept his loud mouth shut and his head down and studied the ins and outs of congress. He could have learned how to write a bill that did something positive for his constituents. Could have found a seasoned mentor to help him shepard it thru committee and on to a vote.

But no .... He's a child, who acts out. No self discipline. A ludicrous figure and easy target for ridicule.

For me as a Buddhist, he is an object lesson that my actions are my only true belongings. I cannot escape the consequences of my actions. My actions are the ground upon which I stand.

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Response to vlyons (Reply #3)

Fri May 13, 2022, 07:59 PM

6. Isn't that the definition of "Republican"?

Republican - (noun) (MOR-ahn) - A grown child who acts out with no self discipline. A ludicrous figure and easy target for ridicule.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri May 13, 2022, 07:18 PM

5. None of it was any big deal to them until he came up with republican drug fueled orgies.

None of it was any big deal to them until he came up with republican drug fueled orgies.

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Response to keithbvadu2 (Reply #5)

Fri May 13, 2022, 09:08 PM

8. Yeah... first rule of rethug drug-fueled orgies

Is that we don't talk about rethug drug-fueled orgies. Once he tried to save his own ass by publicizing their little secret... the jig was up.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri May 13, 2022, 08:04 PM

7. --- best news from the article,

"I can't procreate."

He probably gets a full Darwin by getting in a car with a drunk driver.

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