‘You’re Not Gonna Call Me A Book Burner On TV’: CNN Pundit Explodes At James Carville


Julianna Frieman Contributor
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CNN Senior Political Commentator Scott Jennings exploded Wednesday evening at Democratic strategist James Carville for an “ad hominem attack” during “Anderson Cooper 360.”

Republican Louisiana Gov. Jeff Landry signed Senate Bill 313 into law Wednesday, becoming the 12th state to enact universal school choice. The new law is also set to make Louisiana the first state to mandate the display of the Ten Commandments in public school classrooms. Jennings said he does not “have a problem” with Louisiana’s new mandate, prompting Carville to lash out.

“Scott, I mean, is this a violation of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause? Separation of church and state?” CNN host Anderson Cooper asked. (Click HERE to sign up for the Daily Caller’s latest newsletter, the Mr. Right weekly)

Jennings said “maybe, maybe not” and deferred to the courts regarding the mandate’s constitutionality.

“I certainly don’t think public school teachers should be preachers, but, you know, these are the fundamental tenets of Western civilization. They kinda underpin, you know, our entire criminal justice system,” Jennings said. “And look, if they’re part of a historical display, if they’re hanging up there next to the Constitution, the Mayflower Compact, the Declaration of Independence, I don’t have a problem with it.”

“But I do think it’s sort of amusing, uh, that there are people out here so enraged by this today who at the same time love to use public schools and public libraries and other public facilities to distribute information that more matches their own agenda,” Jennings continued. (RELATED: ‘That’s Remarkable’: CNN Panelists Stunned As Donald Trump’s Immigration Policy Enters ‘The Mainstream’)

Carville agreed that “the courts will have to flesh this out” and added that “the problem is, you gotta get kids that can read.” However, the Democratic strategist swiftly delivered a veiled comment at Jennings about “book burners.”

“Who knows what this court will do. It will go right up the legal system. And what I find fascinating is the book burners really want the Ten Commandments,” Carville remarked with a laugh. “Give me a break.”

Cooper attempted to speak before Jennings fired back at Carville, emphasizing his “worry” about the “quality of education” in the state. The CNN host questioned if Jennings’ stance was “really” about “the quality of public education” and accused him of truly being concerned with “electioneering politics.”

“I don’t necessarily think teaching basic, fundamental values of Western civilization is incongruent or in opposition to also having quality education in the school system. And with that in mind, I do respect the Hell out of James Carville, he’s a legend in our business and for people who do what I do. But you are not going to sit on this television and then call me a book burner,” Jennings said.

“I do not believe in burning books. I strongly believe in the First Amendment. But I have no interest in restricting any information. And I, and I strongly reject the ad hominem attack,” he continued. “We can disagree on this, but you’re not going to call me a book burner on TV.”