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CNN Van Jones Praises Trump on Prison Reform: ‘You Got to Give Him Some Credit’

Jones also cites his personal friendship with Jared Kushner as a driving force behind new legislation

Last Updated: November 15, 2018 @ 6:41 AM

CNN contributor Van Jones offered what he called a “salute” to President Trump after the White House’s new push to pass prison reform legislation, with Jones saying that — differences aside — he would give credit where it was due.

“President Trump said, ‘listen, if this is going to make the streets safer, if it’s going to give people a fairer chance, some of these forgotten men and women, some of them are in Appalachia, as well, let’s do something,'” said Jones during an interview with Don Lemon Wednesday evening. “I think you got to give him some credit.”

Jones compared his view-point to Republicans during the Obama administration who obstructed a Democratic president because of politics even when he did things they agreed with.

“On this one, I’ll give him a salute and applause,” Jones continued. “We’ve got to come together to help the people at the bottom. If you can’t put politics aside to help people who are suffering and struggling in prison when there’s a shot to do something on a bipartisan basis, then I think we’ve taken politics too far.”

Jones a former Obama-era official environmental czar who resigned after sustained Republican attacks against him, later reinvented himself as a CNN contributor with a focus on criminal justice reform.

The issue has long been a low GOP priority, but Trump has expressed openness to cutting a deal with Democrats. Jones has cited his personal friendship with Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner as one of the driving forces of the initiative.

Trump has also been lobbied by Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, who are both passionate about the issue. West is famously close to the billionaire president and the pair has pressed criminal justice to him in person on several occasions.