The Van Jones resignation raises more serious questions

The Politico has a detailed article on the Van Jones resignation that raises some serious questions.At two separate points in the article, we’re treated to this bit of White House spin:

a White House official conceded Sunday that Jones’ past statements weren’t as thoroughly scrubbed due to his relatively low rank


A White House official conceded that Jones “was not as thoroughly vetted as other administration officials,” though the official suggested it had more to do with the relatively low level of Jones’s job than with the power of his patrons.

In other words, according to the White House, Jones was not high enough up the totem pole to be of sufficient power and, consequently, they did not vet him thoroughly.But there is a problem with this. According to the last paragraph of the Politico article

There was little immediate talk of possible successors to Jones, largely due to the sense he would be difficult to replace in an advisory post designed specifically for him, due to his past work in promoting “green jobs.”

The White House created a specific post for Van Jones. What sort of low level muckety muck gets his own specific post without being vetted. More importantly, according to Van Jones in an interview with the Washington Post, he had a sizable role in shaping where some serious money went:

S. ROMANO: The stimulus bill—earmarked $60 billion. Am I correct in that?MR. JONES: It’s close to $80 billion for–for–MS. ROMANO: It’s $80 billion.You and the Administration have estimated what, 2 to 5 million jobs could be created?MR. JONES: Well, you know, there are–we have a potential in the total $787 billion—-that is a part of the energy package, according to the Council for Economic Advisors, to create about 6.8 million job years total, and then, as–as we go forward, the subset of that, which is about that $80 billion, will produce green jobs. So, the total–the total number of jobs for the entire recovery package is 6.8 million job years.

The White House argument that they did not “vet” Van Jones because of his low level role does not add up. Van Jones was in charge of $80 billion and his role was specially created for him.All of this obfuscates the serious questions now raised: Who created this special job for Van Jones and what vetting of any sort did he get?In fact, I’m being told that Valerie Jarrett overruled objections raised by the White House Counsel’s Office and insisted Van Jones be put in that spot. Jarrett has been a cheerleader of Jones for a while, as has Michelle Obama. Specifically, I’m told the Counsel’s Office raised objections to Jones based on Jones’ past activities and associations, including with a 9/11 Truther organization. Jarrett overruled them and Jones in his job.So, the third great question is this: Does Valerie Jarrett think 9/11 Trutherism is an acceptable view point? That position would put her to the left of Daily Kos, which banned 9/11 Truthers from their site.

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