NC-11 – The wake from former congressman and current Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows is cresting as the top two primary candidates engage in a runoff election after emerging from a huge field of candidates.
Lynda Bennett, a successful business woman with the endorsement of President Donald Trump, Mark Meadows, the House Freedom Caucus and the Asheville Tea Party, had the head start on the field early on.
Madison Cawthorn, a real estate investor who finished a very close second in the first primary, has an energetic campaign. The owner of a local real estate investment company turns 25 years old in August, just in time to meet the constitutional minimum. Despite his youth, he has a compelling story.
The crowded and contentious primary prevented any one candidate from eclipsing the 30 percent threshold for outright victory, and this final stretch is proving to be a close head to head as well.
The early support Bennett received from Meadows and others left some resentment among the other factions within the roughly 50,000 voters in the primary. The issue was heavily amplified as an attack by Bennett opponents. Its prevalence, and the coalescing of opponents around Cawthorn, will represent some headwinds.
Still, an endorsement from President Trump, and the relatively popular Meadows, is a significant advantage. Whatever happens, the conservative district is all but certain to send a Republican to congress in November to finally fill the seat left by the founder of the House Freedom Caucus. With the current state of affairs as they are, we’ll need all the conservative champions of individualism we can get.