Speed Reads

the fallout continues

Tillis backs Madison Cawthorn challenger in 'extraordinary broadside' against fellow NC lawmaker

Rep. Madison Cawthorn's (R-N.C.) saga continues.

If a talking-to from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) wasn't enough, Sen. Thom Tillis, another North Carolina Republican, has decided to back one of Cawthorn's opponents in the upcoming GOP primary, "an extraordinary broadside against a fellow Republican from his home state," CNN reports.

"It comes down to focus on the district, producing results for the district, and in my opinion, Mr. Cawthorn hasn't demonstrated much in the way of results over the last 18 months," Tillis told CNN. The senator will instead throw his weight behind state Sen. Chuck Edwards.

In addition to a plethora of other scandals, Cawthorn has most recently made waves for claiming in an interview that he's been invited to orgies by Washington, D.C. insiders and watched key individuals in the anti-drug movement do "key bumps" of cocaine. When pressed on the allegations, the freshman representative offered up a less-than-ideal explanation, backtracking by telling McCarthy he saw "maybe a staffer" doing drugs in a parking garage from 100 yards away, and "doesn't know what cocaine is."

Still, members of his party are, as a result of the claims, "flat pissed off," Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-N.D.) told CNN. "On any given day, he's an embarrassment," added North Carolina's other Republican senator, Richard Burr, referring to Cawthorn.

"I'm gonna do my best to defer to the people in his district to make that choice," Tillis told CNN of his endorsement. But he feels voters in the district will ultimately see why he prefers Edwards to Cawthorn, "both in terms of temperament and a focus on getting things done." Read more at CNN.