Kinzinger says Cawthorn loss ‘good for the country’
In an interview with CNN’s John Berman in which he was asked what he thought about Cawthorn’s loss, Kinzinger said: “Well, it’s good. I mean it’s good for the country, it’s good for the party, it’s good for the 11th District of North Carolina.
He added that Washington, D.C., “has become kind of a growing ground for people that are just more interested in fame than governing” and said that those people “are more interested in becoming famous than in actually doing the very serious work at a time when we’ve got a lot of challenges here at home and overseas.”
“So it’s a good thing he lost.”
Cawthorn, 26, is in his first term in Congress and is the youngest member of the House. He has received outsized attention as a rank-and-file member because of a series of controversial comments and other episodes. At one point, he claimed he’d been invited to orgies by fellow lawmakers and seen some consume cocaine. Those comments annoyed other rank-and-file GOP lawmakers, who had to answer for the remarks in their home districts.
Kinzinger is on the outs with the House Republican Conference, as he is one of two Republicans on the House select committee investigating the Capitol riot and frequently criticizes former President Trump. He is not running for reelection.
In the CNN interview, Kinzinger added that his organization, Country First, was on the ground in North Carolina and said they were not spending money boosting specific candidates but instead “just getting people to turn out to the primary.”
Kingzinger acknowledged the Tuesday primaries weren’t all good news for his side of the GOP.
Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano won the GOP gubernatorial primary after pushing unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.
Asked about Mastriano’s win, Kinzinger said Cawthorn’s defeat does not mean “we’re winning this battle for the soul of the Republican Party, it’s not true.”
According to Kinzinger, this race and others show that there is “a competition” to see who can be more crazy and said it is a “litmus test” of who can be a conservative.
He added that, to him, being a conservative means “you want to spend a little less money and empower people. It doesn’t mean you want to deny elections.”
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