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If Congressman Cawthorn comes to your county - LOOK OUT!!!

We should all be concerned about the behind-the-wheel conduct of Congressman Madison Cawthorn.

The congressman has represented his district so well – bringing jobs, pride and such a general sense of bonhomie to the people of his district that they have a vested interested in seeing that he takes care of himself.

Oops. April Fools Day was earlier this month.

Cawthorn has done none of those things since being elected the nation’s youngest congressman in 2020. Even if he had, it’d still behoove him to observe traffic laws so that he won’t kill some grandmother driving home from the Piggly Wiggly with a box of Nilla Wafers for her fam-favorite banana pudding.

“Oops, my bad” from the congressman won’t bring Granny back.

Not that there’s much chance of Cawthorn expressing remorse for his recklessness. During his short tenure in congress, he has contributed to the coarsening of political discourse in this country, voted against certifying President Biden as president and intentionally released a video of himself punching a tree. He has also accused fellow elected officials of drug-fueled orgies. (Is there any other kind?)

Before millions of heretofore apolitical citizens registered to run for office to get in on that fun, though, Cawthorn admitted that the orgies were merely figments of his fevered imagination.

More disturbing is the fact that he has been stopped and ticketed by the State Highway Patrol three times in five months for charges including speeding, driving left of center and driving with a revoked license.

For almost anyone else, that would sound like a wordless plea for help.

For Cawthorn, it sounds like Monday. He has in the past few months been cited in Polk, Buncombe and Cleveland counties: only 97 more counties to go.

In the dashcam video and a published transcript of one of the stops, Cawthorn registered surprise that the Dodge Challenger he was driving was registered to his daddy.

“Is it really?” Cawthorn can be heard saying when the trooper informs him.

Daddy Cawthorn, when informed of his son’s latest transgression with an automatic transmission, said “Son, you’re gonna drive me to drinkin’ if you don’t stop driving that Hot Rod Lincoln.”

Okay, okay: it wasn’t a Hot Rod Lincoln, but you try rhyming something with “Dodge Challenger.”

The trooper who pulled Cawthorn over immediately informed him “Only reason I was stopping you was for your speed.” He then discovered Cawthorn didn’t have a license with him but graciously declined to write him up for that.

On a different dashcam-recorded stop, Cawthorn immediately informs the trooper “I have a firearm.”

The astonishingly unalarmed trooper finally says “Where’s your firearm at? OK, just keep it up there.”

The transcripts of the stops are easily obtainable by anyone with a computer, but only a select few of us have the transcript of Cawthorn’s trial – probably because it hasn’t occurred yet.

Prosecutor: Trooper Goodlaw, could you tell us, in your own words, what you saw when you pulled the congressman over on the night of Oct. 18, January 8, Sept. 23, March –

Defense attorney: I object, your honor.

Trooper Goodlaw: Why, certainly, your honor. With apologies to Wayne Newton and his paean to marital discord, Daddy, Don’t You Walk So Fast, it happened like this. Maestro, hit it:

The car up ahead of me was speeding

And it drove so fast I nearly had to fly

But halfway down that highway

when up next to it I pulled

The congressman was waving “bye bye.”

That’s when I shouted

Maddie don’t you drive so fast

Maddie don’t you drive so fast

Maddie slow down please

Go back to beatin’ up trees

Maddie don’t you drive so fast.

Well it broke my heart to tell Congressman Cawthorn

That the whip he was driving weren’t his own

He had no way of knowing

It was registered to his Pops

Which I found surprising

Because he is fully grown.

Maddie don’t you drive so fast

The whole state cried

Maddie don’t you drive so fast

Maddie slow down some

And please, holster your gun

Maddie don’t you drive so fast.




Meet Barry Saunders

For over 20 years, Barry was a columnist for The News & Observer in Raleigh, NC. He also wrote for other publications, such as the Atlanta Constitution and the Richmond County Daily Journal. Often described as powerfully honest and illustratively funny, Barry's writing is both loved and hated by readers- sometimes simultaneously.  


Want more? Get your own copy of one of Barry's published books featuring reader favorites (and not so favorites) from his years writing columns for The News & Observer. Titled "Do Unto Others...And then Run" and "...And The Horse You Rode In On Saunders!", they're full of guaranteed entertainment. 


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