Newly elected NC-11 Congressman Madison Cawthorn spoke at the Ellipse rally of Trumpists last Wednesday. Cawthorn said in part: “The Democrats, with all the fraud they have done in this election, the Republicans, hiding and not fighting, they are trying to silence your voice. Make no mistake about it, they do not want you to be heard. But my friends, when I look out into this crowd, I can confidently say, this crowd has the voice of lions. There is a new Republican Party on the rise that will represent this country, that will go and fight in Washington, D.C.”
Henderson County Sheriff George Erwin, who had worked hard for Cawthorn's election, couldn't stand it. He said about Cawthorn's speech, “Words mean things. You can inflame a group and you can calm a group by the words you used. To me, he inflamed,” Erwin said. “.... You rile people up and then afterwards, you’re going to say, ‘Well, this is appalling. This is appalling and I back the blue.’ No, you don’t. You fired these people up and the first line of defense was law enforcement. People are dead. You can’t take that back.”
|Sheriff George Erwin|
Indeed, there's a Cawthorn contrail going all the way back to election night -- "Cry more lib" -- as he plays to a national hardcore audience. He wants to be their new star. Speaking at the Republican National Convention went to his head, and now he's all about the tough guy act. On Dec. 21, at a speech before the young conservative group Turning Point USA, Cawthorn said that if other Republicans were not on the record “calling for fair, free and just elections” he would come to their districts and fund primary opponents. Call your congressman and feel free, you can lightly threaten them and say, you know what, if you don’t start supporting election integrity, I’m coming after you, Madison Cawthorn is coming after you, everybody’s coming after you,” Cawthorn told the group.
The sheriff isn't the only Republican in the 11th District to speak out against Cawthorn. Eddie Harwood, a Buncombe County conservative, posted this on Facebook: “But after his role in inciting this mob violence we saw at the Capitol, my worst fears about his immaturity and willingness to pander to the worst instincts of the right-wing fringe were realized,” Harwood wrote. “Make no mistake: There is blood on his hands. He played a role in encouraging the violence and attack on our democracy, going to get his picture taken and trying to get on the right-wing news by whipping up the crowd that attacked our democracy and our constitutional process. It was disgusting.”