Glenn Beck’s daily attacks on Obama adviser Van Jones paid off today as Jones resigned his position as Obama’s green jobs adviser. There was not a great outcry among the general public for Jones’ resignation, but FNC’s Beck decided to retaliate against Jones to combat the advertiser boycott of his show carried out by the group Color of Change, which was co-founded by Jones.
In his resignation statement, Jones blamed Beck’s smear campaign for driving him out, “On the eve of historic fights for health care and clean energy, opponents of reform have mounted a vicious smear campaign against me. They are using lies and distortions to distract and divide.”
On ABC’s This Week, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs avoided the question of a smear campaign, “Well what Van Jones decided was that the agenda of this president was bigger than any one individual. The president thanks Van Jones for his service in the first eight months helping to coordinate renewable energy jobs and lay the foundation for our future economic problem…The president accepted his resignation, but Van Jones as he said in his statement he was going to get in the way of the President.”
My own opinion is that Beck certainly did carry out a smear campaign against Jones as payback for the advertiser boycott, but Jones’ previous statements made it really easy for Beck to smear him. I think that it was only a matter of time until Jones’ past caught up with him. Even among the left, Jones is a controversial figure, who has both fans and critics.
The Obama administration doesn’t force people to resign. It seems that the culture of the administration expects one to resign if they become mired in controversy. The timing of this resignation is a little odd, as the Jones story is not in the mainstream. It hasn’t posed any problems for Obama. It was something that hadn’t gotten out of right wing circles yet.
Glenn Beck won because he got Jones to resign, and if anything will cause him to amp up his Red Scare 2009 campaign, but people need to understand that the FNC host wasn’t attacking Jones because of communists in the Obama administration. This was all about the Color of Change boycott, and in this respect, Beck is a loser because the boycott is still in place and growing stronger.