Madison Cawthorn throws support behind Mark Walker in NC Senate primary

Madison Cawthorn throws support behind Mark Walker in NC Senate primary
© Greg Nash

First-term Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) is throwing his support behind former North Carolina Rep. Mark WalkerBradley (Mark) Mark WalkerFirst hearing set for lawsuit over Florida's new anti-riot bill NRA appealing Florida ban on gun sales to people under 21 Trump's biggest political obstacle is Trump MORE in the state’s Senate Republican primary in what is expected to be one of the most closely watched races in the 2022 midterms. 

Cawthorn, who was among the GOP lawmakers who helped advance challenges to the 2020 presidential election over unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud, wrote in a statement that Walker “has been an ardent supporter of President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump PACs brought in over M for the first half of 2021 Chicago owes Trump M tax refund, state's attorney mounts legal challenge Biden hits resistance from unions on vaccine requirement MORE, a conservative stalwart” and that the former congressman will work “to stop the radical socialist agenda the democrats want to implement.”

“His commitment to our community, faith and values is unparalleled,” Cawthorn added. “It is more important than ever we choose a candidate with grit, determination and passion, and that candidate is Mark Walker.”

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In a statement responding to the endorsement, Walker said that Cawthorn, who at 25 is the youngest member of Congress and the youngest Republican ever elected to the House, “is a fierce conservative and a proven fighter who will ensure our North Carolina Values are not forgotten in Washington, DC.”

Walker added that Cawthorn "is going to be essential in helping our party expand and connect with the next generation of Americans. I am thankful for his endorsement and look forward to joining him in representing the great people of North Carolina in Washington.” 

Politico first reported the endorsement, which comes after Walker backed Cawthorn in the 2020 Republican primary for North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District over his opponent, Lynda Bennett. 

Walker announced his Senate bid in early December, becoming the first major candidate to launch a campaign for the seat of retiring Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrSenate starts infrastructure debate amid 11th-hour drama The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - A huge win for Biden, centrist senators The 17 Republicans who voted to advance the Senate infrastructure bill MORE (R-N.C.). Lara TrumpLara TrumpPast criticism of Trump becomes potent weapon in GOP primaries Trump endorsement shakes up GOP Senate primary in NC Lara Trump calls on Americans at border to 'arm up and get guns and be ready' MORE, the daughter-in-law of former President Trump, is also said to be weighing a campaign for Burr’s seat.

On the Democratic side, former North Carolina state Sen. Erica Smith, who ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination to take on Sen. Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisBiden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - US gymnast wins all-around gold as Simone Biles cheers from the stands GOP senator credits Sinema for infrastructure deal MORE (R-N.C.) last year, launched her campaign for Burr’s seat in January.

Later that month, North Carolina state Sen. Jeff Jackson (D) launched his race for the U.S. Senate seat in a video posted online, calling for unity and committing to holding town halls “in every single county in the state.” 

Republicans will be defending 20 Senate seats to Democrats’ 14 in 2022. Democrats last month took a majority in the Senate with two Georgia Senate runoffs, giving the party renewed confidence in the traditionally red South.