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RALEIGH, N.C. (WRAL) - U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina was cited on Tuesday morning for bringing a gun to the Charlotte Douglas International Airport, according to a source familiar with the matter.
It’s not the first time the congressman has brought a firearm to an airport. In February 2021, he attempted to bring a gun through security at the Asheville Regional Airport.
The news was first reported by WSOC. Cawthorn’s spokesman, Luke Ball, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, according to WRAL.
Charlotte airport officials deferred to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, which did not immediately respond.
Mark Howell, a spokesperson for the Transportation Security Administration did not confirm Cawthorn’s identity but did say the agency tasked with ensuring traveler safety detected a loaded Staccato 9mmm handgun at Checkpoint D at the Charlotte airport at around 9 a.m. Tuesday. It also deferred to local police officials for further questions.
Cawthorn is running for reelection in the state’s westernmost district, where he faces seven Republican primary challengers. The congressman in recent months has been embroiled in a string of self-inflicted personal and political wounds ranging from driving violations to highly questionable comments about elderly GOP colleagues he says invited him to an orgy.
Cawthorn has also drawn criticism for calling Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy a “thug,” comments WRAL News first reported.
The 26-year-old congressman is running with the support of former President Donald Trump, who reaffirmed his support for Cawthorn at an April 9 rally in Johnston County. He is opposed, however, by several prominent North Carolina Republican lawmakers.
U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis, state Senate leader Phil Berger,and state House Speaker all back Cawthorn’s top primary challenger, state Sen. Chuck Edwards.
Local Republican official Michele Woodhouse is taking aim at Cawthorn from the right flank of the party.
An anti-Cawthorn political action committee has also gotten involved in the race by urging Democrats to switch their party affiliation just for the May 17 primary election. The Fire Madison Cawthorn super PAC is backing Navy veteran Wendy Marie-Limbaugh Nevarez for the GOP nomination.
The other Republicans vying for the nomination include financial adviser Matthew Burril, Army veteran Rod Honeycutt, businessman and former Cawthorn supporter Bruce O’Connell and Weaverville resident Kristie Sluder.
Jeff Moore, a spokesman for the North Carolina Republican Party, declined to comment on Cawthorn’s latest report of bringing a gun to an airport.
Copyright 2022 WITN. All rights reserved.
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