Fox Sports Radio host Clay Travis shocked CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin on Friday by declaring on live television that he believes “in only two things completely: the First Amendment and boobs.” But the network really shouldn't have been surprised by Travis's crass remark. He has used the line before.
Travis, who also writes for Outkick the Coverage, appeared on Baldwin's afternoon show to talk about ESPN's handling of “SportsCenter” anchor Jemele Hill, who called President Trump a white supremacist earlier in the week. Travis's position is that Hill ought to be able to say whatever she pleases but that ESPN has acted hypocritically by keeping her on the air, after disciplining other personalities for making politically charged comments.
Travis has participated in similar discussions on other networks, having boosted his profile last month by being first to report that ESPN had reassigned a play-by-play announcer named Robert Lee who was originally scheduled to call a college football game in Charlottesville.
One one hand, the Robert Lee scoop makes Travis a logical guest for TV segments about ESPN's personnel moves. On the other hand, Travis's history makes him an obvious risk.
A CNN spokeswoman said Travis would not be invited back on the network's air. Here is what he wrote for Outkick the Coverage on Thursday:
I don’t believe Jemele Hill should be fired for tweeting Donald Trump was a white supremacist and for recently saying police officers are modern-day slave catchers. I also don’t believe Curt Schilling should have been fired for what he said about the North Carolina transgender bathroom law or any of the other conservative political positions he’s adopted over the years. That’s because I’m a First Amendment absolutist — the only two things I 100 percent believe in are the First Amendment and boobs — who is also capable of doing something that most in modern media seem incapable of — distinguishing between a person’s public job and their private political beliefs. (Which are also public thanks to modern-day social media.)
There it is. And that wasn't the first time. Travis wrote in June 2015 that “absolutism on either the right or the left is scary to me — which is why I’m a radical moderate — who believes in only two things absolutely: the First Amendment and boobs."
When Baldwin appeared stunned and disgusted by Travis's quip on Friday, he replied, “I say it live on the radio all the time.”
This is who Travis is. CNN ought to have known what it was getting.