Van Jones, who’s a well-known name in Oakland, having co-founded three Oakland and San Francisco Bay Area non-profits the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Color of Change and Green For All and wrote The Green Collar Economy (which I talked to him about in this video) while in Oakland (as well as having been a member of the same Oakland gym as this blogger), has finally found his grove as the co-host of CNN’s Crossfire.
(Oh, Jones did make the mistake of moving to LA after bolting Oakland for Washington DC.)
In taking on Texas Senator Ted Cruz on Crossfire Thursday (which also featured Speaker Newt Gingrich and Sheldon Whitehouse (D) Rhode Island), Jones got the Friday sound-bite of the day: “Are you sorry for leading your party into a ditch?
Van Jones used Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R) Wisconsin’s Wall Street Journal op-ed, where Ryan promoted a plan to raise the debt ceiling that did not involve defunding Obamacare, or The Affordable Care Act, as a weapon, and asked if Ted Cruz would support Paul Ryan raising the debt ceiling to avoid a “horrific” default “without your Obamacare obsession in it.”
Ted Cruz responded: “An awful lot of Washington would like to change the subject. But you know who hasn’t stopped focusing on Obamacare is the American people.”
Van Jones continued his attack on Ted Cruz, siting polls showing that the Republican Party’s popularity is at its lowest point in history.
“Do you feel like you owe your party an apology?” Jones asked.
Senator Cruz didn’t respond except to laugh, but he should have said something as it looked, to me, like Cruz stopped and thought about that question.
Van Jones: “Listen. You have people who believed in you, they believed that you were somehow going to be able to defund Obamacare, they believed the strategy of shutdown might have a chance. They followed you into a ditch. And now, there’s obviously there’s no chance Obamacare will be defunded, and we’re on the brink of a horrific default. Do you think that in the reflection of your own heart, you might say, ‘You know what? I’m a new kid here, I think I owe you an apology’?”
“You know, Van, I know you desperately want to change the topic from Obamacare,” Cruz responded , again, without answering the question. “Democrats in this town do not want to discuss Obamacare. Why? Because it isn’t working.”
That’s not true.
The truth is that The Patient’s Affordable Care Act is causing a much needed focus on the problems of high health care costs, and is providing a solution. Moreover, the Obamacare website, Healthcare.gov, actually gives free marketing to a number of healthcare providers who are offering affordable health insurance.
Here’s Van Jones v. Ted Cruz:
Van Jones’ sound bite was picked up by Real Clear Politics, Opposing Views, Michael Savage, The Huffington Post, and over 90 news sources.
Van Jones Strikes Back
It’s nice to see Van strike back against Conservatives on Crossfire, and after what seemed to be weeks and days of reports on how Crossfire co-host S.E. Cupp “destroyed” Jones. I felt Van was going easy on Cupp, who’s debating weakness is a tendency toward emotion such that details escape her.
But, after realizing Conservative blogs were having a field day with him, Jones altered his laid back style, and got aggressive.
I’m not one who embraces the “progressive” label, as I think it runs away from sound, well-established liberal principals and focuses too much on attacking business just for the sake of doing so. as if there’s some nobility in poverty. In attacking Cruz, Jones has presented himself, finally, as a sound liberal public critic, and not an outsider progressive, constantly whining about big business being bad.