September 6th, 2009
05:49 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama did not order Van Jones' resignation, adviser says

Van Jones speaks during the National Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, in August.
Van Jones speaks during the National Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, in August.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The resignation of Obama administration figure Van Jones, following controversies over a petition he had signed and his comments about Republicans, did not come at the request of the president, the White House senior adviser said Sunday.

"Absolutely not - this was Van Jones' own decision," David Axelrod told NBC's "Meet the Press" when asked if the president had ordered the resignation.

The chairman of the House Republican Conference, Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana, had called for Jones to resign or be fired.

"I think Van Jones did the right thing," Pence said Sunday about the resignation. "His extremist views and coarse rhetoric have no place in this administration."

Jones has frequently been dubbed a "green-jobs czar" for the administration.

"The president should suspend any future appointment of so called czars while the administration and the Congress carefully examines the background and qualifications of the more than 30 individuals who've been appointed to these czar positions," said Pence, speaking to reporters. "And the Congress ought to initiate a thorough inquiry into the constitutionality of this practice which has spanned Republican and Democrat administrations."

In a statement Saturday night, the White House said Jones was giving up his post at the Council on Environmental Quality, where he helped coordinate government agencies focused on delivering millions of green jobs to the ailing U.S. economy.

"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 the statement. "They are using lies and distortions to distract and divide."

Updated:5:49 p.m.

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Filed under: Obama administration • Popular Posts • Van Jones
soundoff (179 Responses)
  1. Realist

    Thank God

    September 6, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  2. SLM

    Another great Obama pick...........he sure can pick em, can't he? Obamas picks and their hatred of Republicans show just what this administration is made of...............tax cheats and terrorists.

    September 6, 2009 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  3. James

    I know little about Van Jones, but I have no doubts whatsoever that the prior administration was at least somewhat complicit in what occurred on Sept 11. I am not saying they were a direct participant, but I think extreme willful negligence, along with some expectation that something more minor was in the works, that could be used to the advantage of the Bush administration, along with its political and economic supporters, was certainly at play. I am just a regular working professional, not particularly attached to any political philosophy, and it is just the events predating 9/11 have never quite sat right in my mind. I will say that currently, as much as I am less then enamoured with the Obama administration on some issues, the GOP still scares me more.

    September 6, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  4. Wynter

    This sounds like a man of honor and conviction. We actually need more of these types of people in Washington, not less.

    September 6, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
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