Dulles High School
Political consultant, commentator and was an advisor to President Bill Clinton
BiographyPaul Begala (born May 12, 1961) is a political consultant, commentator and was an advisor to President Bill Clinton. He gained national prominence as half of the political consulting team Carville and Begala. Until June 2005, Begala was a co-host of CNN's political debate program, Crossfire. He is Research Professor of Public Policy at Georgetown University Public Policy Institute.
Begala was born in New Jersey and raised in Missouri City, Texas. He earned his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Texas at Austin, where he taught briefly before going to work for Bill Clinton. While at the University of Texas, Begala was a candidate for Student Government president. However, he finished second to a write-in campaign for Hank the Hallucination, a monster character from the comic strip "Eyebeam." Begala was declared the human winner, following a ruling that imaginary characters could not hold the position .
Paul Begala burst onto the political scene when he, along with partner James Carville, helped then-governor of Arkansas Clinton win the 1992 presidential election. After working on Clinton's campaign, Begala served as a consultant to the President. As an aide to the President, Paul helped defend the Clinton-Gore agenda and served as a public spokesperson.
Aside from the 1992 presidential election, Begala and Carville have had other well-known political victories which include the 1991 Senate victory of Harris Wofford, the 1988 re-election campaign of incumbent Senator Frank Lautenberg, and the gubernatorial victories of Robert Casey in 1986 and Zell Miller in 1990.
Before becoming a co-host of Crossfire, Begala co-hosted a show, Equal Time, with Oliver North on MSNBC. He also was a contributor to John F. Kennedy Jr.'s political magazine George in the late 1990's.
Begala is a devout Roman Catholic. He is personally opposed to abortion and calls on fellow Catholics to be consistently "pro-life" - in opposition to not only abortion, but war, the death penalty, and lack of health care. Begala still keeps on hand a pocket New Testament he received from Brother Jed in the 1970's
As an author and co-author, Begala has written a handful of best selling political books. His writings include: Is Our Children Learning?: The Case Against George W. Bush, Buck Up, Suck Up and Come Back When You Foul Up, and It's Still the Economy Stupid.