A group of North Carolina voters told state officials on Monday they want U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn disqualified as a congressional candidate, citing his involvement in last January’s rally in Washington questioning the presidential election outcome before a Capitol riot later that day.
Cawthorn’s office quickly condemned the candidacy challenge of the Republican, which was filed on behalf of 11 voters with the State Board of Elections, which oversees a process by which a candidate’s qualifications are scrutinized. The voters contend that Cawthorn, who formally filed as a candidate for the 13th District seat last month, can’t run because he fails to comply with an amendment in the U.S. Constitution ratified shortly after the Civil War.
The 1868 amendment says no one can serve in Congress “who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress … to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same.”
The written challenge says the events on Jan. 6, 2021, “amounted to an insurrection” and that Cawthorn’s speech at the rally supporting President Donald Trump, his other comments and information in published reports provide a “reasonable suspicion or belief” that he helped facilitate the insurrection and is thus disqualified.
“The importance of defending the bedrock constitutional principle that oath breakers who engage in insurrection cannot be trusted in future office is essential to maintain,” Ron Fein, legal director of Free Speech for People, a national election and campaign finance reform group backing the challenge election, told The Associated Press.
Fein said the Cawthorn challenge will be the first of many they intend to file against other members of Congress associated with the insurrection in the near future. Free Speech for People and the group Our Revolution announced last week that it would urge state election administrators to bar Trump and members of Congress from appearing on future ballots….ReadMore…