On Sep. 19, about three weeks before North Carolina’s voter-registration deadline for the general election, failed President Trump’s former chief of staff, Mark Meadows, claimed to be living in a 14-by-62-foot mobile home in Scaly Mountain, North Carolina. The trouble is, it doesn’t appear to be true. And that my friends, is voter fraud—a federal crime—something Meadows has been ranting and raving about since Trump lost the election bigly in 2020.
According to The New Yorker’s Charles Bethea, Meadows does not own the Scaly Mountain property, which sits in the southern Appalachian mountains, but his wife, Debbie, did rent the house out for a couple of months. As for Mark Meadows, the (unnamed) owner of the house told The New Yorker, “He did not come. He’s never spent a night in there.” Although, the Meadows family did stay the home in the fall of 2020 when they were in the area for a Trump rally as nearby hotels were mostly booked.
The Washington Post has uncovered a new detail to this story. In March of 2020, the Meadows’ were living in a condominium in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. But, Debra Meadows didn’t use that address, she used the address from the mobile home in Sapphire, North Carolina to register and vote in the June Primary runoff election for someone she’d done fundraising for.
Mark Meadow’s mother, Mary Gail Garwood, lived at the Sapphire property in 2012, 2014, and 2016, but she registered to vote in Georgia on Sept. 12, 2018. On Sept. 13, the very next day, Mark listed the property for sale.
Fast forward to just two weeks before the 2020 general election, and the Meadows used the mobile home in North Carolina as their primary residence on their voter registration forms. But, to register to vote in North Carolina, a citizen must have lived in the county where they’re registering for at least 30 days before the date of the election, according to the state’s board. And we know that Debbie stayed there a couple of days, but Mark never even visited. As The New York Times reports, “Both forms appear to have been filled out by the same hand; they were released with the signatures redacted.”
For a guy who’s hanging his hat completely on voter fraud with regard to Trump’s presidential run, he doth protest too much.
A neighbor of the house, Tammy Talley, told The New Yorker she was friends with Mark and Debbie Meadows, and that Debbie and their two adult children had visited. Talley did not mention Mark staying at the house.
One of the authors of North Carolina’s voter-challenge statute is Gerry Cohen, who tells The New Yorker that voter registration must be legally a “place of abode” where the registrant has spent at least one night and where the person intends to live indefinitely. If Meadows didn’t stay in the house for at least one night, then he committed fraud. Another way to prove residency is a driver’s license, cable bill, W-2, or car registration listing the address.
So, why would Meadows claim to be living in a mobile home in the middle of nowhere North Carolina? Perhaps because he was considering a run for the Senate seat opening when Republican Richard Burr vacates later this year. Meadows did not ultimately run for the seat.
Meadows isn’t new to obfuscating the truth. In 2016, when he was Rep. Meadows, he sold a 134-acre property in Dinosaur, Colorado for $200,000. The problem was, he was required by law to file for the sale, and he failed to do so.
The property was sold to a nonprofit that intended to use it to prove their cockamamie concept of creationism.
Most recently, Meadows took a job with Conservative Partnership Institute, a nonprofit founded by the former South Carolina senator—and former president of the Heritage Foundation—Jim DeMint. In July 2021, a few months after taking the job and just weeks after the formation of the House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the United States Capitol, Donald Trump's "Save America" PAC donated a whopping $1 million to the institute.
A few months later, Mark and Debbie Meadows purchased a $1.6-million-dollar lakefront estate in Sunset, South Carolina. According to The New Yorker, the Meadows’ voter registration remains linked to the Scaly Mountain mobile home.