Archived Opinion

Cawthorn should have stayed to vote

Cawthorn should have stayed to vote

To the Editor:

I’m writing to express my outrage regarding Madison Cawthorn’s bogus attempt to defend his proxy vote when the House of Representatives voted on the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. His first offense was trying to project blame on Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.,claiming she purposely changed the floor schedule knowing that he and about 10 other Republican members were scheduled to speak on Friday at CPAC in Orlando. Speaker Pelosi is a master vote counter and it’s not uncommon for her to modify the floor schedule if there’s an issue that needs further attention before calling for a vote.  She knew how Cawthorn and his CPAC comrades were going to vote, so she had no need to work around them. 

Secondly, is “an ongoing public health emergency” really a legitimate excuse for Cawthorn’s absence when he traveled to a Code Red state? In addition, CPAC was pretty much a maskless event. All things considered, the U.S. House chamber was a safer environment for him. 

Finally, Cawthorn tossed out a classic  “whataboutism”  by claiming that Democrats had cast proxy votes “from yachts, mansions and speaking events.” Perhaps that is true, but it’s unlikely that they claimed a “public health emergency” as the reason for their absence. For those of you who may not be familiar with the term, “whataboutism” is typically associated with Russian or Soviet propaganda.

Cawthorn has openly admitted that his primary focus is “comms” (publicity), not legislating. In short, it’s all about the show for him and speaking at CPAC presented a better opportunity for him to be a star than being present to cast a “No” vote on the House floor. 

Myrna Campbell

Waynesville

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