Cocaine and orgies? Cawthorn, WNC GOP silent amid competing stories

Rep.  Madison Cawthorn appears on a show on a conservative YouTube channel in which he made claims of orgies and cocaine use among Republican legislators.

ASHEVILLE — A day after a top Republican leader said Rep. Madison Cawthorn admitted lying about a bombshell cocaine and orgy story, a Donald Trump aligned operative has said Cawthorn denied that recanting — competing creating GOP narratives that Cawthorn has declined to weigh in on.

Party officials in Cawthorn’s Western North Carolina 11th District have also declined to help members of the split GOP decide whom to believe about the bizarre and potentially damning claim.

“It is not the roll of local GOP Party leaders to weigh in, to tell anyone who or what to believe,” Roxan Wetzel, interim chair of the party’s 11th District organization, said in an email.

Wetzel did not answer a follow-up question as to what she thought of the claim. Other party leaders did not respond to messages, including District 11 interim chair David Eachus, Buncombe Chair Glenda Weinert, Henderson Chair Sharon Brooks and former Henderson County Board of Commissioners Chair Tommy Thompson, who backed Cawthorn in his 2020 election.

Madison Cawthorn spoke at the Henderson County Republican Men's Club meeting March 19, 2022, at the Cascades Resort in Hendersonville.

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Cawthorn spokesperson Luke Ball did not respond to multiple messages. Cawthorn was not present at the March 31 House session and voted by proxy.

While he has declined to comment, Cawthorn on March 31 retweeted a story from the conservative online magazine the Federalist, which said the furor over his statement was a distraction. Instead Congress should focus on allegations of a Chinese spy raised campaign funds years ago for Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell, the article’s author Tristan Justice said.

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