The View of Van Jones is not exactly flattering.
The CNN commentator appeared on the ABC talk show Friday to discuss his new documentary about American unity titled “The Reunited States,” which he co-produced with The View panelist Meghan McCain.
Sara Haines complimented Jones and the film, but it didn’t take long for the conversation to get heated. At issue, some of the other co-hosts accused him of working both sides of the political aisle and providing “racial cover” to former President Donald Trump.
“Now Van, you do spend a lot of time threading the middle and trying to unite people,” Sunny Hostin said. “But there are those who accuse you of being a political opportunist, a chameleon, so to speak — who provided racial cover for former, disgraced, twice impeached President Trump.”
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Hostin then told Jones most Black people don’t “trust” him, after he praised Trump for doing “good stuff for the Black community.”
“Yet just recently you cried on CNN when Joe Biden was elected the 46th president, and you said it’s easier to be a parent now, character matters now, truth matters,” Hostin added. “You even mentioned George Floyd and said a lot of people felt they couldn’t breathe. People in the Black community don’t trust you anymore. What is your response?”
Jones disagreed with her comments. “Well, I don’t think that’s true,” he said, adding that social media users often take his comments out of context.
“People may not like everything I’ve said on television and I try to be balanced,” he explained. “But look at what I have done. Who among my critics have been able to get people together to help folks at the bottom? When we fight like this about everything and you can’t give anybody even a little bit of credit for anything, who it hurts is not the politicians, it’s not the pundits, it’s regular folks who don’t have anything.”
He went on to remind Hostin about his work with the Trump administration on criminal justice reform.
“I’m never going to apologize for putting the interest of people at the bottom first,” he said. “People need champions. Whoever is in that White House, you have a responsibility to go in there and advocate and try to get people home out of prison. I’m going to keep doing it, whoever is in that White House.”
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Meghan McCain defended her good friend and said it’s important to work with all sides to get things done.
“I want to say you have been such a life raft to me, and given me so much hope to live in the spirit of how my dad taught me to,” she said. “And a lot of people come up to me almost hourly saying, ‘I loved your dad, I loved your dad, I loved your dad, we need more like him.’ Well, do you know what he did? He worked with the other side all the time. That’s what he did. And he made hard choices and he was bipartisan, and he saw the good in people.”
Then it was Ana Navarro’s turn to share her thoughts.
“Sunny is right,” she told Jones. “You’ve lost a lot of people who trusted you and who saw you as a voice because of the positions you took during Trump,” she stated.
She then reminded him that in 2016 he was a Trump critic, but then became an ally of the administration.
“How did you go from being this very principled critic of the Trump administration, as I was, to all of a sudden being in the White House celebrating with them and posing for pictures with [conservative commentator] Candace Owens? Can you explain the evolution to people who are puzzled by it,” she said.
“There is no evolution,” Jones responded. Watch the rest of the segment from The View below.