From HuffPo, courtesy of Philip Elliott (AP): President Barack Obama's adviser Van Jones has resigned amid controversy over past inflammatory statements, the White House said early Sunday.
As I reported previously, Van Jones has been linked to extremely radical views in recent days. His long past of using race in the environmental arena has stirred up controversy. An organization that he previously founded, Color of Change, has organized a boycott of conservative host Glenn Beck, after Beck began reporting on Jones' sordid past affiliations and statements. Jones has continued to make racially charged statements and was caught on video calling republicans "a- holes." This earned him the nickname, "the a- hole czar" according to Ann Coulter in an interview on a conservative talk radio show Friday.
Jones previously issued apologies for any past statements and claimed that the radical past views did not reflect his current ideologies. He also insisted that he did not agree witht the claims of the 9/11 Truthers, even though he was an organizer of events which pushed that agenda prior to his signature on the petition. Outspoken critics and outraged conservatives have called for his resignation in the past few days.
Originally, it appeared that the White House would ignore the radical appearance of the Green Jobs Czar. Robert Gibbs, in answering questions regarding to Jones' past behavior, said that Jones continued to work at the White House. Apparently more discussions were going on behind the scenes than Gibbs was letting on. Early Sunday morning, Jones resigned from his post.
Huffington Post reports Jones' statement:
"On the eve of historic fights for health care and clean energy, opponents of reform have mounted a vicious smear campaign against me," Jones said in his resignation statement. "They are using lies and distortions to distract and divide."
Jones said he has been "inundated with calls from across the political spectrum urging me to stay and fight."
But he said he cannot in good conscience ask his colleagues to spend time and energy defending or explaining his past.