The Return of the Rabble Rouser

Under fire, Van Jones resigned from the Obama Administration. But he's found a new cause: rallying liberal groups on behalf of the Occupy protesters

Daryl Peveto / LUCEO for TIME

A portrait of Van Jones at his home in the Silver Lake area of Los Angeles, October 23, 2011.

On Oct. 3, two weeks after the first Occupy Wall Street squatter settled on a marble bench in Zuccotti Park, most of the nation's liberal kingpins gathered 200 miles away in Washington to voice their solidarity. "Let the word go forth," called a speaker on the ballroom stage at the Washington Hilton. "They got unity on Wall Street. They got unity in 50-some cities. And we've got unity in this room."

It was a remarkable gamble: hundreds of student, environmental, labor, feminist, immigrant and minority-rights leaders pledging support for a cause they neither foresaw nor controlled. Even more remarkable was the...

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