Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) has reached the end of his rope with fellow North Carolina congressman Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC).
Tillis told CNN on Wednesday that he’s backing one of Cawthorn’s seven GOP primary challengers, North Carolina state Sen. Chuck Edwards (R), in the upcoming midterms.
“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 said.
The senator’s announcement intensifies the blowback among GOPers against Cawthorn after he recently claimed during a podcast that unnamed members of Congress had invited him to orgies and did cocaine in front of him.
Cawthorn’s comments drew fury among his Republican colleagues, who were already inflamed by his attacks on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky earlier in March.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) had have a chat with the 26-year-old Republican on Wednesday, with House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) in attendance.
McCarthy told Politico afterward that Cawthorn didn’t provide any evidence of the alleged orgies, and that the North Carolina Republican claimed he “doesn’t know what cocaine is.”
Cawthorn also claimed during the discussion that he might’ve confused whom he allegedly saw doing a “key bump of cocaine” in front of him, according to McCarthy. Rather than a member of Congress, “he thinks he saw maybe a staffer in a parking garage maybe 100 yards away,” the House GOP leader said.
However, Cawthorn’s claims of seeing a staffer snort cocaine off a key at a nearly football field-distance and also not knowing what coke is in the first place seem to have done little to smooth things over.
Republicans’ outrage over Cawthorn’s Veep-esque account of congressional indiscretions stands in glaring contrast to their muted response to Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Paul Gosar (R-AZ) speaking at a white nationalist conference last month.