James Carville is a Democratic strategist who serves as a political contributor for CNN, appearing frequently on CNN’s The Situation Room as well as other programs on all CNN networks. Carville remains active in Democratic politics and is a party fundraiser.
Carville was formerly co-host of Crossfire, CNN’s political debate program. Carville, an outspoken Democratic political strategist and commentator, emerged onto the national political scene after his consulting firm, Carville & Begala, helped elect President Bill Clinton in 1992. For his work on the Clinton campaign, the American Association of Political Consultants named him Campaign Manager of the Year in 1993. He went on to serve as a senior political adviser to the president.
In recent years, Carville has not been a paid political consultant for any domestic politicians or candidates for office. Carville & Begala’s other well-known electoral successes include the 1991 Senate victory of Harris Wofford in Pennsylvania, the 1990 gubernatorial victories of Georgia’s Zell Miller and Pennsylvania’s Robert P. Casey, and the 1998 re-election of Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey.
Often referred to as the “Ragin’ Cajun” for his animated and colorful debating style and his roots in Louisiana, Carville began managing political campaigns in 1982. Before entering politics, he worked as a litigator at a Baton Rouge, La., law firm from 1973-1979 and also had stints in the U.S. Marines and as a high school teacher.
Carville co-authored the best seller Buck Up, Suck Up… and Come Back When You Foul Up with Begala and has also authored We’re Right, They’re Wrong: A Handbook for Spirited Progressives, And the Horse he Rode in on: The People vs. Ken Starr, and ‘Stickin- The Case for Loyalty. With his wife, renowned Republican strategist Mary Matalin, he co-authored a book titled, All’s Fair: Love, War, and Running for President. Matalin is a former conservative host of Crossfire (1999-2001).
Born and raised in Carville, LA, a town named for his grandfather, he graduated from Louisiana State University with undergraduate and law degrees.