June 11th, 2008
03:42 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama's VP vetter steps aside

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/11/art.jim.ap.jpg caption="Jim Johnson is no longer involved in Obama's VP search."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A key member of Barack Obama's vice-presidential search team, James Johnson, is stepping down after criticism over a mortgage he received, the Obama campaign said.

"Jim did not want to distract in any way from the very important task of gathering information about my vice presidential nominee, so he has made a decision to step aside that I accept," the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee said in a statement.

Republicans had been hammering Johnson since the Wall Street Journal reported Saturday that he received a good deal on a mortgage from Countrywide due to his friendship with the company's CEO Angelo Mozilo. Obama has criticized Countrywide in connection with the subprime mortgage crisis.

WATCH Obama defend Johnson Tuesday

Full story


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. jAY

    now will CNN ever put the tight in depth focus on McCains camp of thugs & lobbyists?

    June 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. Adedokun from Atlanta

    Good decision. Now McBush will have to make 50 of his staff step down

    June 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  3. Ralph

    How silly!

    June 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  4. Frantz (Atlanta)

    This is absolutely ridiculous. Now we need to vet the vetter?

    This was a non-paying and purely voluntary position. Was this resignation really neccessary?

    Either way, I am sure Obama will pick the right VP.

    Obama '08!

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  5. Arizona

    God bless you mr. Johnson. I love your statement!

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  6. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Maybe Obama should vet the vetters.

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  7. lou

    It took George Bush 4 years to lose his first high profile pick. This is one more proof that NObama is a 2 year old in a grown up world. With the entire Democratic machine at his disposal, they can't even choose a VP without a mess. Imagine the entire country in his hands. God forbid.

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  8. V

    Here's why I am surprised. The Republicans are going after random Obama VP searchers. Doesn't it seem like they have better targets to attack than VP searchers?

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  9. RANDY

    Wow it worked....my first CNN posting! And all you have to do is declare Obama the savior!

    This network is worse than MSNBC

    June 11, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  10. Obama fall from grace begins

    The back door dealing; cronyism; shady deals; questionable ethics. et al will begin to ooze out of the Obama camp as Americans begin to know this totally unknown and totally inexperienced candidate

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  11. Really?

    Thanks for playing . . . yawn . . .

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  12. AMW

    PROBABLY A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. WONDER IF SOME FAVORITISM INVOLVED???? IN D.C.!!! WHAT A SHAME. HARD TO BELIEVE. OH, WELL.
    LET'S JUST DECIDEDON SENATOR CLINTON. IT SHOULD BE HER POSITION ANYWAY. WELL, REALLY SHE WON THE POPULAR VOTE, SO SHE IS THE PRESUMPTIVE NOMINEE FOR PRESIDENT IN THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF 18M PEOPLE.
    WOULDN'T IT BE REMARKABLE TO SEE SOMETHING REALLY FAIR
    HAPPEN IN THAT REGARD? A CLINTON/OBAMA TICKET IS WHAT SHOULD BE ANYWAY. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE (WE THE PEOPLE) FEEL THAT WE SHOULD DECIDE. ANY PLANS TO HAVE SOMEONE PLACE SENATOR CLINTON'S NAME IN NOMINATION. I THINK THAT NEEDS TO HAPPEN. ANYBODY???ANYBODY????

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  13. Sue

    This was so "not a story" and it is sad that he had to resign.
    Totally blown up out of proportion.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  14. S. Shay

    I’m sure Hillary Huckabee and Billyboy Redface are the ones who hipped the Rethugs to Jones’ dealings with Countrywide. Jim Jones is known non-Clinton supporter so it serves her interests to have him not be a part of the vetting process. We’ll probably find out Caroline Kennedy ate Elmer’s Glue in the third grade and wears men’s boxer short, next week. Hilly and Billy never cease to amaze us.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  15. TJ in Texas (Dallas)

    I think Silly Season is upon us again.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  16. A Democrat No More

    Bad Judgment that Obama picked him in the first place to help select a VP nominee.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  17. wycliffe, NJ

    If I was him I will do the same. Not giving the enemy a stand to pour out their wrath. McCAIN said what ? I do not care when the troops come home. He should know very well that I care, and He has surely lost my vote.

    Indepent for Obama

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  18. gary

    MAYBE ALL OF THEM WILL DECIDE TO LEAVE.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  19. Ken in Las Vegas

    If this is the worst that anyone can come up with, its going to be a pretty good week for Barack.

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  20. fraulein

    I hope that John McCain will take this as a cue to get rid of all of the lobbyists who are paid on his staff. Realistically, I can't see that happening – it would leave him with a staff of one or two staffers – max! I wish that Barack Obama had not accepted this resignation – but public perception should be crystal clear so that John McCain will be left to answer for all of his lobbyist contacts. He should stammer through that nicely in front a a putrid green screen. That's not change we can believe in my friends...
    The republicans are going to have a harder time remaining in their holier than thou stance. Stay tuned...

    June 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  21. BT

    Thank goodness they dealt with this quickly!
    There's no room for hypocrisy in politics!

    Ch-ch-changes...

    June 11, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  22. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    dum dum dum dum another one bites the dust !!!!!!!!!!!

    June 11, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  23. Kevin

    I guess now Obama has to replace Jim Johnson with an angel from heaven in order for simple minded people to get over petty crap! NO ONE IS PERFECT, GET THAT IN YOUR HOLY HEADS anti-Obama folks AND LET'S MOVE ON!!

    June 11, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  24. ONE DOWN - MORE TO GO!1

    EMPTY SUITS, CORRUPTION, HATRED, RACISM ETC. I HAVE BEGUN MY HEALING PROCESS AND I AM ACTUALLY DOING MUCH BETTER THAN EXPECTED.

    NO VP FOR HRC. SHE IS TOO GOOD FOR #2 SLOT. I WANT TO SEE THIS MAN GO DOWN WITHOUT HER. SHE'S BEEN THROUGH ENOUGH!!

    I LOVE YOU HRC – YOU'RE MY HERO!!

    June 11, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  25. Eric

    Oh no, he got a good rate on a mortgage, let's call out the lynch mob. Ok, if you know someone at a bank that can get you a good rate on a mortgage wouldn't you take advantage of it too? It's not like they gave him a million dollars and he only had to pay back 500k. He got a good terms, what's the problem?

    June 11, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
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