CNN's Baldwin to Sen. Kennedy: "You Don't Have to Agree With Speaker Pelosi, But You Should Respect Her" | Video | RealClearPolitics

CNN's Baldwin to Sen. Kennedy: "You Don't Have to Agree With Speaker Pelosi, But You Should Respect Her"


CNN's Brooke Baldwin reacts to Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) insulting House Speaker Nancy Pelosi by saying, "it must suck to be that dumb."

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: We have come to expect intense partisanship at Trump rallies, but last night, in Louisiana, that partisanship took a nasty personal turn. And the person spouting the insults was not the president. It was Louisiana Senator John Kennedy.


SEN. JOHN KENNEDY (R-LA): And you know what our Democratic friends have done for him?

Speaker Nancy Pelosi is trying to impeach him.


KENNEDY: I don't mean any disrespect, but it must suck to be that dumb!



BALDWIN: It's not just what he said. Listen to the cheers.

Saw that young boy in between the two of them standing behind them.? I think we all know we're really living in partisan times, but this is a sitting U.S. senator disrespecting the speaker of the House, the person who is third in line to the presidency and the most powerful woman in our government.

Mr. Senator, you don't have to agree with Speaker Pelosi, but you should respect her.

Matt Lewis is a senior columnist for The Daily Beast and a CNN political commentator. And, Matt, you were just as angry as I was. Tell me why.

MATT LEWIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, not only is this a senator disrespecting the speaker of the House. This is a grown man disrespecting a lady in public and being cheered for it.

So I think it speaks to civility. And this is very common. We saw the other day Rand Paul at a rally, very similar, playing to Donald Trump standing beside him, playing to this Trumpian crowd, calling for the media to unmask the whistle-blower.

And here you have a U.S. senator, not to be disrespectful, of course, but calling Nancy Pelosi dumb. And he was really just -- it was a caricature of a demagogic populist politician. It was like Huey Long.

The whole reason that I never -- as someone who's a conservative center-right journalist, sort of being a caricature of a Huey Long populist is not exactly what the -- what I signed up for in political parties.

BALDWIN: I just -- I -- to your point, grown man, and -- but I also am not just looking at him. And I'm not just looking at the president standing next to him.

But I'm looking at the crowd behind him. And I'm listening to how the crowd responds and the cheers. And I see this young man that you can see standing behind them who, I don't know, could be a teenager, and -- right there, in one of the white hats, standing between the two of them.

I mean, not...

LEWIS: Yes. Well, this is...

BALDWIN: I'm almost, like, out of -- it's like behavior and language raising a generation of bullies, giving the signal that it's OK to talk like this.


BALDWIN: To a woman or a man.

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