McCarthy: Cawthorn had ‘no evidence’ for orgy allegations, must ‘turn around’

Leader of the minority in the house Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyJD Vance: Greene ‘did nothing wrong’ by attending white nationalist conference Defense and National Security – Officials Skeptical Russia Reduces Military Campaign Lawmakers pay tribute to late GOP Representative Don Young lying in state in Capitol Hill MORE (R-Calif.) on Wednesday, Rep. Madison Cawthorn’s (RN.C.) allegations of being invited to orgies and seeing people using cocaine were unfounded and that he would not rule out further disciplinary action against the 26-year-old. term member.

“He needs to turn around,” McCarthy told reporters, talking about a meeting he had with Cawthorn that morning.

Cawthorn frustrated GOP colleagues after appearing on the “Warrior Poet Society” podcast last week, saying that spicy elements of the Netflix television drama “House of Cards” are not far from reality.

“Suddenly you’re invited to, ‘Well, hey, we’re going to have some kind of sexual gathering at one of our houses. You should come.’ … You realize they’re asking you to come to an orgy,” Cawthorn said, adding that he’s seen people advocating against addiction doing “major punches of cocaine.”

McCarthy said Cawthorn gave him no evidence to support that characterization. The explanation for the cocaine allegation was that “he thinks he may have seen an employee in the parking garage from 100 meters away.”

“This is not acceptable. There’s no evidence for that,” McCarthy said. “That’s not befitting a congressman. He didn’t tell the truth.”

The Republican leader cited a number of other recent statements and actions by Cawthorn that he found inappropriate for a member of Congress.

Earlier this month, Cawthorn called Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky a “thug”, which McCarthy had previously said was “wrong”. Cawthorn also likely broke house rules when he brought Tennessee Republican House nominee Robby Starbuck to the house floor in February. And he was recently charged with driving with a revoked license and speeding in two different counties.

When asked whether Cawthorn could face penalties from the House Republican Conference, such as removal from his committee posts, McCarthy said “many different things could happen.”

“He’s lost my trust and he’s going to have to earn it back,” McCarthy said. “You can’t just say, ‘You can’t do this again.’ I mean, he has — he has a lot of members very upset. He can’t just make statements.”

McCarthy’s discussion with Cawthorn came after members complained about his most recent comments at a House Republican Conference meeting on Tuesday. Members said Cawthorn raised questions about whether they participated in those activities and that the 26-year-old must provide evidence if he makes such public allegations. Cawthorn was not present at the meeting, having stayed in his district due to a forest fire.

Both Republican senators in North Carolina also expressed frustration with Cawthorn. sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrHouse Ready To Pass Bill Legalizing Marijuana The Memo: Democrats Hope GOP Overplays Hand In Jackson Hearings (RN.C.) told NBC News that Cawthorn “has been a disgrace at times.” sen. Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland Tillis Two-piece group of senators asks for details on defense aid to Ukraine Supreme Court battle shows GOP wants to stay clear of Trump Jackson faces growing GOP opposition in Supreme Court MORE (RN.C.) told CNN that the orgy comment was Cawthorn’s latest “foolish statement” and that he accomplished “not much” for his district.

Cawthorn declined to answer additional questions from reporters on Wednesday.

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