Decision Desk HQ pollsters have favored Sen. Chuck Edwards in the race for North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District. This field includes eight candidates.
Edwards currently leads Cawthorn by almost 1,500 votes with 94% of all votes tallied. This will not be the case as Edwards and Cawthorn have both crossed the threshold. Ballotpedia says that North Carolina candidates can request a recount if there is a difference of votes between the winning candidate or the requester and less than 10,000 votes or 0.5%. We will likely look at a recount.
At 10:10 Eastern, Cawthorn told supporters that “the race was very close but that it had to be decided. ”
Congressman Madison Cawthorn just came out to address supporters at his election night party in Hendersonville @NBCNews. Race is still too close to call but he’s trailing behind State Senator Chuck Edwards. No matter what, there won’t be a runoff here. pic.twitter.com/r7FyaBxKjS
— Antonia Hylton (@ahylton26) May 18, 2022
Reports started to surface that Cawthorn had conceded defeat 30 minutes later.
The Associated Press reported Edwards called Cawthorn in order to agree to the 11th Congressional District Primary, Edwards campaign spokesperson Luke Ball told The Associated Press.
According to Edwards’ campaign, Cawthorn called him to confirm his agreement. ”
North Carolina reporter says that Cawthorn has left the party.
Cawthorn has left the party & will not give any more remarks this evening. Spox Luke Ball says they want to wait until every vote is counted and a recount is a possibility depending on where final results end up. He said to look for a statement on Twitter when the time comes.
— Cory Vaillancourt (@SMN_Cory) May 18, 2022
Cawthorn was elected North Carolina’s representative for 2020. Many were optimistic about this 26-year-old rising Republican star. However, his favorability rating dropped 13 points between March and Election Day. After claiming that D.C.’s political class is rife with cocaine use and orgies, he lost 13 points. He also lost 13 points after photos of him in women’s lingerie were released.
Cawthrorn’s fundraising efforts were far more impressive than those of his competitors. He had raised $3.6 million as of April 27th, according to financial disclosures. Bruce O’Connell received only 6.8% of the vote. Edwards raised $1.1million.
Cawthorn relied on Donald Trump’s endorsement. It didn’t arrive until March 31st, but were his negatives too much for Trump to overcome?
Thom Tillis, a popular sitting senator, endorsed Edwards. Tillis stated that Edwards is a dedicated representative who will serve his constituents. There are many qualified candidates that could make a difference for voters.
Tillis declared Edwards victorious on Tuesday night:
Republicans chose @ChuckEdwards4NC tonight because he is the embodiment of Mountain values who will fight for them every single day in Congress with honor and integrity! #ncpol #nc11
— Thom Tillis (@ThomTillis) May 18, 2022
Cawthorn claimed that outside groups wanted to bring him down. Cawthorn stated, “The establishment, radical left, and the media want to bring me down…”I will not stop fighting.” “I will not bow down to the mob. They want America First to be silenced. ”
He also claimed that RINOs were trying to defeat
RINOS are tripping over themselves to defeat me.
They will lose.
We will win. pic.twitter.com/C2Zeg1vBWn
— Madison Cawthorn (@CawthornforNC) April 29, 2022
He is not without merit.
“Our March survey showed that Cawthorn was well-positioned for re-election,” stated Jim Blaine. ”
Cawthorn said Tuesday that his campaign would send a message to the GOP establishment.
Western North Carolina, today is the day.
Today’s the day we send a message to the Establishment and the Swamp: you have no power over the people.
America first will win.
I ask for your vote today. Polls are open now!
I’ve only just begun to fight for you.
— Madison Cawthorn (@CawthornforNC) May 17, 2022
It’s possible that pundits overestimated this race by calling it. Reports that Cawthorn conceded defeat to the incumbent suggest that he thinks he lost. But it wouldn’t be the first time that a candidate has withheld his concession.