in November. Last week, conservative Madison Cawthorn, who is 24, won a runoff election in the GOP primary for North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District, which is centered around Asheville.
Cawthorn’s unexpected triumph put him in the national spotlight, in part since President Trump and previous 11th District Congressman Mark Meadows– the president’s present chief of staff– backed someone else, Lynda Bennett.
If Cawthorn wins in November, he will become the youngest member of Congress without a doubt. Democrat Alexandra-Ocasio Cortez is the youngest today, at 30.
And Cawthorn would enter Congress after being paralyzed six years back after a near-fatal cars and truck accident in Florida.
In this interview, Cawthorn says the GOP has actually had a hard time to get in touch with more youthful citizens, that numerous Republicans are beholden to nonrenewable fuel sources, and the GOP has failed in coming up with a much better strategy than the Affordable Care Act.
Cawthorn will face Democrat Moe Davis, a retired Air Force colonel in November. The 11th District was just recently redrawn to include Asheville, a Democratic fortress, but President Trump won the new district with 57% of the vote in 2016.
Steve Harrison: You have remained in a wheelchair since your senior year of high school. On the campaign path, did that resonate with the people of the 11th District? Was it something they asked you about?
Madison Cawthorn: You know, undoubtedly it’s not something I take pleasure in discussing. It represents a substantial unhappiness and discomfort that I need to go through in my life every day. But I will say that a person of the important things that actually resonated with voters is when I start talking about the lessons I have learned from this. And you have your apparent lessons. Any time you go through something tough, that constantly puts grit and determination deep inside you. But I’ve discovered that it also taught me a lesson I had actually not formerly thought of, and that is compassion and compassion.
Going through my life I was blessed to be from an excellent family. I was extremely athletic. School was pretty simple for me. So it was tough for me to feel sorry for individuals who were going through a difficult time or possibly had a various background from me. Today that I have remained in a wheelchair, I’ve seen what it’s like to be looked over in a crowd or feel disenfranchised or feel left behind.
Harrison: You spoke about compassion with others. I want to continue with that style. Asheville had a few of the most intense protests over the death of George Floyd. Did your views on Black Lives Matter modification? Did they shift from the start of the year to now?
Cawthorn: No, I would state it’s basically the exact same. Obviously I think that Black lives matter. I believe that all life is valuable. And so, I think as a Christian and an American, I think what’s excellent about the American experiment is we do not practice tribalism. We’re a blended culture, and I believe that’s a truly effective method to be.
Harrison:You are 24 now, and you will hardly satisfy the minimum age requirement of 25 if chosen. And you have actually stated you want to bring a fresh face to the Republican celebration and assist it improve its messaging to younger citizens. However I have actually head that a lot over the years. How are you going to be various where others have stopped working?
Cawthorn: Well, gosh, they may have said that’s what they wanted to, however my goodness they have failed. You understand, (Texas Republican Politician Congressman) Dan Crenshaw is a bit more centrist than I am. However I believe Dan Crenshaw’s done the very best job of speaking about how the message of conservatism is that our company believe in individual responsibility and liberty.
Harrison:Was this primary a reflection of individuals being dissatisfied with the president or was this about the inside politics of how this primary was set up, with Mark Meadows seemingly favoring Lynda Bennett?
Cawthorn: I would by no means say this was a referendum on President Trump’s impact here. I believe the only thing that it revealed is that the people of western North Carolina do not take well to cronyism.
Harrison: I think it was in The New york city Times interview you have said one location that you differ from lots of Republicans is the environment. But inform me what does that look like, because President Trump has rolled back a lot of ecological guidelines. He took the U.S. out of the Paris Environment Contract. Would you wish to reverse any of those choices? What would you do moving on?
Cawthorn: Where I believe I vary from a great deal of Republicans is that I believe a great deal of Republicans are purchased and paid for by the nonrenewable fuel source market. And I’ll inform you that in 2019, let’s make automobiles a bit more tidy, let’s do what we can. However what I will inform you that what I think is essential to recognize is that I recommend (the environment) when it doesn’t hurt the economy.
But at this moment, with 30 million people unemployed– I understand it changes by a couple of million every day up or down– I don’t think this is the time to be virtue signaling and sending out a lot of heightened guidelines. However I will inform you I would love to get a strategy that got us far from being so fossil fuel-dependent. Naturally, I like the idea of wind and solar however I think the best response is going to lie in nuclear.
Harrison:Republicans have attempted to reverse the Affordable Care Act for more than a decade. Should they keep going? Exists a better way? Or is the ACA here to stay and the GOP needs to live with that?
Cawthorn: Let me ask a concern: What is the Republican strategy? Have you ever heard a strategy? I’ve never heard one. I follow politics pretty dadgum close, and they always said “repeal and replace,” and I’ll inform you we have actually had an useless batch of Republicans that came in the early part of this decade who were unable to keep Obamacare from getting passed, unable to reverse it and had a hard time just to get the Farm Bill through. It was revolting.
Our party is supposed to be the party of action, the part of strength, and the party of having the ability to have excellent fact-based concepts, and I do not believe we have actually seen that. My concept rather of “repeal and change” it kind of “repeal and decontrol.” Whether you’re talking about Blue Cross Blue Guard here in North Carolina or several other states, you understand, Blue Cross Blue Guard has a virtual monopoly on the whole state due to the fact that they’re safeguarded due to the fact that a business requires a certificate of need to come into practice therefore because of that we see these artificially high insurance coverage rates, which I was the direct victim of, which’s something that I really want to get fixed.