Beck: American People Stood Up to Bring Down Van JonesSunday, September 6, 2009 8:43 PM
Fox News host Glenn Beck, who led the charge calling for the resignation of President Barack Obama’s “Green Jobs Czar” Van Jones said Sunday that Jones is only the first of many radicals in the administration who should be facing questions.
“The American people stood up and demanded answers," Beck wrote in a statement. “Instead of providing them, the Administration had Jones resign under cover of darkness. I continue to be amazed by the power of everyday Americans to initiate change in our government through honest questioning, and judging by the other radicals in the administration, I expect that questioning to continue for the foreseeable future."
Jones resigned late Saturday following mounting criticism over his past statements and associations. The tipping point came when it was discovered that he signed a petition in 2004 supporting the "9/11 truther" movement, which believes the Bush administration may have been complicit in the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
“Much of the credit for Jones resigning should go to Fox's Glenn Beck, who as HuffPo's Ryan Grim notes, has his "first scalp,” Politico reported Sunday.
Beck’s victory was being lauded by conservative columnists and grudgingly acknowledged by liberals across the country Sunday.
“Face it, Glenn Beck won a big victory for conservative America with the resignation of Van Jones,” wrote Yael T. Abouhalkah, Kansas City Star Editorial Page columnist.
“Beck kept up the pressure, and the mainstream media reported on it. As a result, Jones couldn't really muster any effective counter-attack. He had made mistakes, tried to apologize for them but was too late,” Abouhalkah added.
“As scary as this may sound… Glenn Beck might actually have more power than anybody else representing the Republican Party,” the Web site Political Lore.com wrote Sunday. “As the Republican Party seemingly has no leader in their ranks, at least one that can represent the voice of the people. Even though Glenn Beck is an independent, he represents more Republicans than the Republican party.”
“The resignation of Van Jones signals that Glenn Beck’s words do not fall on deaf ears. The view’s of Glenn Beck have been labeled “extreme” from just about everyone on the left. Van Jones views are arguably just as extreme, if not more so,” the article continued.
It was Beck who repeatedly called attention to a series of statements by Jones that suggested Republicans were incompetent and bad in their opposition to Obama’s liberal agenda. Among other things, Jones called GOP members racists and a**holes.
Jones was also the co-founder of ColorOfChange, the African-American activist group that attempted to lead a boycott against Beck. But the boycott had the opposite of the intended effect – many advertisers denied they were boycotting Beck and his grassroots support surged. In the traditionally weak, non-prime time slot at 5 p.m., Beck is now drawing more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined get in their prime time hours.
Even before the attempted boycott, Beck mentioned Jones twice on his radio show and twice on television. The boycott started after Beck called Obama "a racist" on Fox & Friends, but the comment occurred in the context of the racial controversy surrounding the arrest of Obama friend Henry Louis Gates by a white Cambridge police officer.
Beck mentioned Jones on 14 episodes, according to the Washington Independent's Dave Weigel, while also railing against him on "The O'Reilly Factor."
Beck also succeeded in keeping the national debate focused on the far left tendencies embodied in many of Obama’s policies and nominees, Politico pointed out. Now Obama is going into a key health reform speech before Congress on Wednesday with the taint of the Van Jones scandal marring his agenda.
“Between Cambridge cops; whether administration officials are or are not for the public option; right wing mobbing at town halls; and the back to school welcome contretemps, the White House has been forced to play defense and loose-ball control over [the summer],” former Clinton White House aide Chris Lehane told Politico. He noted that a “very important week” could have been consumed by “ a discussion related to an obscure staffer who no one has ever really heard of.”
But even before his resignation, critics said the controversy surrounding Jones was indicative of the fundamental problem with the administration's reliance on such advisers.
Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., the first lawmaker to call for Jones' resignation, told Fox News that in light of the controversy Obama should suspend the appointment of additional "czars" until Congress has a chance to examine the background and responsibilities of such individuals, as well as determine the constitutionality of such appointments.
Now that Jones is out of the way, Republicans are turning their fire on czars in general.
Sen. Lamar Alexander, the third-ranking Republican in the Senate, called the czars "an affront to the Constitution" since they are not approved by Congress.
"I don't think (Jones is) the issue. I think the czars are the issue," Alexander, R-Tenn., said on "FOX News Sunday." "We have about two dozen so-called czars -- the pay czar, the car czar, all these czars in the White House."
Republican strategist Ed Rollins said the administration needs to focus on bringing people on board who are competent and not controversial.
"(Jones) got out of there, but the more fundamental thing is there are 31 czars in that White House," he said.
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OBAMA JOINT SESSION
Okay, so anyone watching the joint session of Congress which Obama called for to discuss his health care plan would be flabbergasted at all the misinformation and lies that Obama spewed during the 45 minute "info-mercial". Where he is going to come up with $900 billion dollars to fund it is crazy. And the lie that it won't cover illegal aliens destroyed Obama's crediblity utterly. He also stood there and berated the Republicans for "lying" about many health care issues that have sprung up. I had to laugh when Congressmen Wilson from South Carolina finally couldn't take being called a liar anymore and stood up, sayin, "You lie!" What is good for the goose is good for the gander, Mr. Nobama.
SARAH PALIN'S RESPONSE
Response to the President's Health Care Speech
After all the rhetoric is put aside, one principle ran through President Obama’s speech tonight: that increased government involvement in health care can solve its problems.
Many Americans fundamentally disagree with this idea. We know from long experience that the creation of a massive new bureaucracy will not provide us with “more stability and security,” but just the opposite. It's hard to believe the President when he says that this time he and his team of bureaucrats have finally figured out how to do things right if only we’ll take them at their word.
Our objections to the Democrats’ health care proposals are not mere “bickering” or “games.” They are not an attempt to “score short term political points.” And it’s hard to listen to the President lecture us not to use “scare tactics” when in the next breath he says that “more will die” if his proposals do not pass.
In his speech the President directly responded to concerns I’ve raised about unelected bureaucrats being given power to make decisions affecting life or death health care matters. He called these concerns “bogus,” “irresponsible,” and “a lie” -- so much for civility. After all the name-calling, though, what he did not do is respond to the arguments we’ve made, arguments even some of his own supporters have agreed have merit.
In fact, after promising to “make sure that no government bureaucrat .... gets between you and the health care you need,” the President repeated his call for an Independent Medicare Advisory Council -- an unelected, largely unaccountable group of bureaucrats charged with containing Medicare costs. He did not disavow his own statement that such a group, working outside of “normal political channels,” should guide decisions regarding that “huge driver of cost ... the chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives....” He did not disavow the statements of his health care advisor, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, and continuing to pay his salary with taxpayer dollars proves a commitment to his beliefs. The President can keep making unsupported assertions, but until he directly responds to the arguments I’ve made, I’m going to call him out too.
It was heartening to hear the President finally recognize that tort reform is an important part of any solution. But this concession shouldn’t lead us to take our eye off the ball: the Democrats’ proposals will not reduce costs, and they will not deliver better health care. It’s this kind of “healthy skepticism of government” that truly reflects a “concern and regard for the plight of others.” We can’t wait to hear the details on that; we look forward to working with you on tort reform.
Finally, President Obama delivered an offhand applause line tonight about the cost of the War on Terror. As we approach the anniversary of the September 11th attacks and honor those who died that day and those who have died since in the War on Terror, in order to secure our freedoms, we need to remember their sacrifices and not demonize them as having had too high a price tag.
Remember, Mr. President, elected officials work for the people. Forcing a conclusion in order to claim a “victory” is not healthy for our country. We hear you say government isn’t always the answer; now hear us -- that’s what we’ve been saying all along.
- Sarah Palin