Van Jones, the controversial green jobs advisor for the Obama administration, voluntarily resigned from his position over the weekend. White House officials announced his resignation Sunday and denounced claims that they pressured Jones into leaving office. Obama’s senior advisor, David Axelrod, told NBC’s Meet The Press:
“The bottom line is that he showed his commitment to the cause of creating green jobs in this country by removing himself as an issue.”
Jones made headlines after being caught on video saying that “Republicans are assholes.” He found himself in more hot water after being linked to a petition calling for an investigation into whether government officials deliberately allowed the September 11 terrorist attacks to occur. In his resignation statement, Jones claims he was a victim of lies, distortions and a smear campaign. He wrote:
“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…”
He also added that he did not want his colleagues to defend his character any further, instead he would rather they press on and “fight for the future.”
“I cannot in good conscience ask my colleagues to expend precious time and energy defending or explaining my past. We need all hands on deck, fighting for the future.”
Before his position with the Obama administration, Jones was a best-selling author. His book, The Green Collar Economy: How One Solution Can Fix Our Two Biggest Problems takes a look at how going green can save the world and put the U.S. back on top from an economic perspective.