Things got messy on Friday’s episode of “The View” when hosts Sunny Hostin and Ana Navarro confronted CNN’s Van Jones for saying positive things about former President Donald Trump.
“People in the Black community don’t trust you anymore,” Hostin told Jones, who is a black man himself. She added that Jones was perceived as being a “political opportunist” and “chameleon” who “provided racial coverage” for Trump.
“I don’t think that’s true,” Jones fired back, adding that he had also called out the “horrific stuff” that he claims Trump did. He then blamed social media for not showing his statements in context.
“My entire life has been about bringing people together to solve tough problems for the people at the bottom who don’t have anything,” Jones continued, adding that he needed to work with Republicans to bring about prison reform. “I’m going to keep doing it, whoever’s in the White House.”
Navarro, however, was not having any of it.
“In 2016 you and I were probably the two most vocal critics of Trump, during the campaign, on CNN, to the point where it was reported that Jared Kushner went in and met with executives at our parent company and asked that you and I be fired,” she said. “And all of a sudden you show up working with Nepotism Barbie and Nepotism Ken, and showing up in pictures with Eric Trump and with Candace Owens and so I think there’s people wondering – and I’m one of them – how did that evolution happen? 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 Candace Owens? Can you explain that evolution to people who are puzzled by it?”
“There’s no evolution,” Jones explained. “When Obama was in office I was working with Newt Gingrich, I was working with Republicans then, to get people out of prison. When you are in federal prison, you don’t get to vote, you don’t get to be on Twitter. You have no opportunity to impact what is going on.”
He went on to say that refusing to work with Trump would have “been about me” rather than people in prison.
“I was a person who was willing to go in there and do it with every president to get people home from prison,” Jones continued.
“But you took smiling pictures with Candace Owens,” Navarro fired back. “Do you not regret that? Do you not see that’s giving her legitimacy?”
At this point, the segment had run out of time, and cohost Joy Behar told them, “You two are going to have to take it outside.” Check out the full exchange below.