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'A SENSE OF THE TROUBLE HE IS IN'

‘Weird’ Mood at Madison Cawthorn’s HQ as He Trails in the Polls: NBC News Reporter

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Controversial Rep. Madison Cawthorn’s election party was not joyful as he trailed in the Republican primary for renomination.

“Nearly 45 minutes after polls closed on Tuesday night, Rep. Madison Cawthorn trailed challenger state Sen. Chuck Edwards,” The Charlotte Observer reported. “Cawthorn, the youngest member of the 117th Congress, had already earned national attention in his first term for his support of former President Donald Trump, his far-right beliefs and his controversial comments and behavior. But beginning in March, a series of scandals, which he called a drip campaign from his Republican colleagues, plagued the congressman.”

U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis backed state Sen. Chuck Edwards, who was leading the race.

“It began when he called Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy ‘a thug’ and the Ukrainian government ‘evil.’ It escalated when he went on a podcast and said his congressional colleagues participated in orgies and did key bumps of cocaine. From there he was charged with driving with a revoked license, was caught at an airport for the second time with a gun, accused of insider trading, while photos of him draped in lingerie on a cruise ship and a video of him naked in bed with another person leaked,” the newspaper noted.

NBC News correspondent Antonia Hylton reported there was a “weird” mood at Cawthorn’s headquarters.

“And frankly, the mood at’s election night party behind me here is a little weird. There is about 30 or so people milling around, probably about a third of them are reporters. It’s very quiet, nobody has come out on stage and said much to us yet. and, so you get the sense that people are — they have a sense of the trouble that he is in,” she reported.

“I’m not surprised. I spent the day out of the precincts in a Republican district right near me here and I talked to Republicans all day long, who are using words to describe him like, immature, or maybe not ready to lead at 26,” she reported.

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'A SENSE OF THE TROUBLE HE IS IN'

Half of Twitter’s Top Advertisers Flee as Elon Musk Welcomes Trump Back

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While billionaire Elon Musk has reinstated the Twitter accounts of insurrectionists and transphobes like Donald Trump and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), half of Twitter’s top 100 advertisers have pulled ads on the microblogging platform over the last two weeks, according to The Washington Post and Media Matters.

Analyzing data from Pathmatics, a digital marketing trend research company, the publication found that vehicle maker Jeep; food makers Mars, Coca-Cola, Kraft Heinz, Nestle, and Kellogg; telecommunications corporations AT&T and Verizon; fashion brand Chanel; hoteliers Hilton and Marriott; auto manufacturers Chevrolet and Ford; pharmaceutical giant Merck; and beer brewer Samuel Adams have all stopped advertising on the site since Musk took it over.

“Mars started suspending advertising activities on Twitter in late September when we learned of some significant brand safety and suitability incidents that impacted our brand,” the company wrote to the Post. The other companies didn’t submit statements.

While Musk has been laying off and firing Twitter employees in order to ostensibly save money and make Twitter profitable, it is still heavily dependent on ads. “Nearly 90 percent of the company’s $5 billion in revenue [in 2021] came from advertising,” the Post reported. Collectively, the companies invested over $750 million in advertising on Twitter in 2022 alone, Media Matters reported.

The ad cuts are particularly notable considering that many companies spend their end-of-year budgets during the holiday season in order to lure customers. But since Musk has increasingly presented himself as an unpredictable right-wing public figure, companies seem increasingly worried about being connected to his personal brand.

“Twitter, for most of these brands, has never been a critical part of their ad buy,” Andrew Lipsman, an Insider Intelligence analyst who covers retail and e-commerce, told the publication. “It’s a big enough channel that they are going to get those dollars, but it’s one of the easiest pools of spending to remove.”

In early November, Musk alienated advertisers by promising to “name and shame” any companies who pulled ads from the site. He also damaged some companies’ public images after pranksters used Twitter’s new blue check verification system to imitate them and publish false and offensive messages under their brand names.

Musk has since pulled back his name-and-shame threat in a letter to advertisers, promising companies in a letter that Twitter wouldn’t become a “free-for-all hellscape, where anything can be said with no consequences!”

Concurrently, civil rights groups have been pressuring the site’s top advertisers to commit to pulling their ad dollars if Musk undermines the website’s community standards and allows hate speech and disinformation to proliferate on it.

If Musk’s welcome of Trump and Greene is any indication, toxicity will indeed proliferate on the site under the guise of “free speech,” causing even more advertisers to flee.

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