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North Carolina U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn calls Volodymyr Zelenskyy a “thug”

Video critiquing Ukrainian leader comes to light on same day newspaper reveals Cawthorn was busted for driving on revoked license

♦By Rich Shumate, editor

North CarolinaASHEVILLE, North Carolina (CFP) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy may be viewed around the world as a bold freedom fighter standing up for his people against a tyrannical dictator – but not, apparently, by North Carolina Republican U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn.


U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn, R-North Carolina

WRAL-TV in Raleigh obtained a video of Cawthorn speaking at a constituent event where he calls Zelenskyy a “thug” and tells the audience to “remember that the Ukrainian government is incredibly corrupt and is incredibly evil and has been pushing woke ideologies.”

It was unclear where the video was shot. However, Republican political guru Karl Rove, who disclosed the video’s existence in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal, said the remarks were made at a town hall event in Asheville over the weekend.

On Wednesday, Cawthorn was one of just 17 House members who voted against imposing an oil embargo on Russia for invading Ukraine.

The disclosure of the video came on the same day that the Asheville Citizen Times revealed that Cawthorn had been charged with driving on a revoked driver’s license after being pulled over on March 3 in Cleveland County, when a state trooper saw his vehicle cross the center line.

It is the second time Cawthorn has been charged with driving on a revoked license, and he also has two pending citations for speeding in Buncombe and Polk counties, the Citizen Times reported.

He could face up to 20 days in jail if convicted for driving on a revoked license.

Shortly after WRAL reported on the video, Cawthorn took to Twitter to try to walk back his remarks, calling Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine “disgusting.”

However, he also said “leaders, including Zelensky, should NOT push misinformation on America,” posting a link to a Reddit site that accuses Ukraine of spreading misinformation about the war.

Cawthorn also said that while he was “praying for Ukraine and the Ukrainian people,” he was also praying that “we are not drawn into conflict based on foreign leaders pushing misinformation.”

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