Madison Cawthorn’s GOP fundraising has come to a screeching halt: report

Madison Cawthorn’s GOP fundraising has come to a screeching halt: report
Rep. Madison Cawthorn in December 2020, House Creative Services

Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) is facing growing opposition on multiple fronts as he braces for the upcoming midterm elections. From lack of support from Republican congressional incumbents to a screeching halt in fundraising, the future of the freshman lawmaker's political career appears to be in jeopardy.

According to The Daily Beast, new campaign finance statements have shed light on the drastic drop in fundraising. "A new campaign finance filing from Cawthorn’s joint fundraising account with the National Republican Congressional Committee—called “Cawthorn Triumph”—shows zero dollars in receipts for the first three months of the year," The Beast reports. "A handful of fundraising blitzes last year fueled $673,000 in donations, but the well went dry in October, and Cawthorn Triumph hasn’t raised any money since."

However, the problems don't stop there. The Beast has also reported documentation of another filing. Spun from an acronym of his own name, the “Making A Difference In Service to Our Nation” (MADISON PAC) has also brought its fundraising efforts to a halt. For the first quarter of the year, the PAC has reported only $2,000 in financial contributions.

Both of Cawthorn's political committees appear to have spent nearly all funds reporting only $14.52 in cash in the leadership PAC account. The lawmaker's campaign committee also appears to have drained its account. While filing documents will not be available until next week, The Beast reports that the account has only retained "about 10 percent of the $2.9 million he raised last year."

So, where is all of the money going?

The Beast reports:

"The expenses appear almost entirely related to travel. That includes a late-January trip to Miami, far from Cawthorn’s Smoky Mountain home, where the PAC racked up more than $4,000 in expenses at the JW Marriott and Ritz Carlton. But because the filing doesn’t mention any corresponding fundraising events or transfers to other committees, and news reports from the time don’t appear to account for any Cawthorn activity in the area, it’s unclear how those expenses relate to any PAC activity."

One Republican insider familiar with Cawthorn's campaign noted that he has been attracted to Florida as it is the home of known Trump supporters who appeal to his cause.

“President Trump is down there, and the state has become a major draw for national Republican political figures. It’s the MAGA center of gravity,” the person said. “And the work of Republican officials in the state, namely [Florida Gov. Ron] DeSantis, is being used as a measuring stick for other elected representatives.”

Despite Cawthorn's financial burn rate, the Republican lawmaker appears to be more focused on the support of single donors as opposed to having the support of the political party. “Madison’s straight-talking persona endears him to the MAGA constituency," said the Republican source, "and he garners much more support from individual donors than from the establishment arm of the party."

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