Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

This quote seems pretty difficult to interpret otherwise:
"I have no intention to run for president," Gore said in an interview conducted in Los Angeles and broadcast Thursday by the BBC.

"I can't imagine in any circumstance to run for office again," said the former Democratic vice president under then-president Bill Clinton.
In the past, there have been bad reports that didn't actually quote Gore. There have also been many times where Gore made comments that, while making it clear he was not leaning towards running, did not shut the door entirely. However, this time it is an actual quote from Gore, and I really don't see how it can be interpreted to mean anything except that he isn't running. Keep in mind that I spent a lot of time in my life studying deconstruction and post-structuralist critical theory, so I am quite open to the possibility of alternative and indefinite meanings. But here, I don't see much. The best option I can see here is that in a circumstance Gore is unable imagine at this time, an overwhelming "draft" movement could make him feel compelled to run no matter his intentions. However, if I may be frank, that is just unbelievably thin for anyone still holding out hope.

If this is true, it will certainly break a lot of hearts in the progressive movement. I can hardly count the number of movement activists I know who are still banking on a late Gore entry, especially since the scenario for a successful late entry is plausible when it comes to Gore. From March to October, he could win an Oscar, go on a book tour, sponsor a series of concerts, win a Nobel Prize, and then announce. After that almost unbelievable wave of positive publicity, his huge netroots base and suddenly very deep pockets would provide him with all the resources he needs. That is a perfectly reasonable scenario to consider for Gore, with one catch: he actually has to be willing to run himself. I see no way to conclude that he is willing.

Despite all of the energy for Gore, despite all of the great things he has done, and despite how he was robbed of the presidency in 2000, in the end this statement only compounds a series of statements that have made pretty darn clear he does not intend to run in 2008 (or 2012, or 2016, etc.) How anyone could read this statement from Gore and still think there is any chance he will run in 2008 is beyond me. We are, after all, in the reality-based community here, right? If someone says he has "no intention of running," and that he "can't imagine any circumstance to run for office again," then what are people looking for him to say before they believe he won't run in 2008? At some point, I think, if you are going to like someone at least in part because he says great things, then you need to start believing him even when he says things you don't want to hear.

But maybe I am missing something. I certainly have been burned on this before. If you want to post your laments for Gore's potential candidacy, or if you think there are still some ways that Gore could actually run, please say so in the comments. As for me, I'm off to Friday evening Happy Hour...

Tags: Al Gore, President 2008 (all tags)




If we can't have us our Al Gore, then we need a shot of Obama.

by Aeolus 2007-02-16 11:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

It's not that hard to say "I will not be running in 2008."

I'm tired of parsing nuances and trying to figure out if this week's statement is more definitive than last week's statement where the comma was placed slightly differently.

When he stops talking in terms of "intention," and says "I'm not running," I'm confident there won't be any room left for debate.  In the meantime, I'm not losing sleep.

by Steve M 2007-02-16 11:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?
This isn't just about the "intention" statement. He coupled it with a statement that said there is no circumstance where he would ever run for office again, which is the kind of statement you were looking for.

How is "I am never running for office again" different from "I can't imagine in any circumstance to run for office again." What unimaginable circumstance could present itself?
by Chris Bowers 2007-02-16 12:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Your question reminds me of a time when I was drafting a contract, and I said I wanted to try and protect against unforeseeable consequences.

The other side asked me if I could give an example of an unforeseeable consequences.  No I can't, I said, because then it wouldn't be unforeseeable, now would it?  He didn't seem to follow me.

by Steve M 2007-02-16 12:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I don't know, I've watched it three or four times, and it's not clear to me that it's substantially different from any of his prior statements.  It's certainly not a "Sherman" statement.

I love the guy, I want him to run, so I know I'm biased, but trying to parse these things too closely . . . I still think there's a chance.  

Part of my (perhaps unreasonable) belief that the option is still on the table is simply the sheer volume of press he is managing to generate, which is quite substantial.  He's generating articles in the MSM on a daily basis, most of them positive in terms of their coverage.  

If you are trying to "re-brand" yourself, and raise your favorables, he's doing it in about as smart a way as can be done.  Call it my innate cynicism about politicians (or "former" politicians), I just don't think any particular, off the cuff statement, or even an aggregate of them, is "proof positive," ever.  Watching the video, I can just see him in a similar interview in six months saying,

"Well, you know, when I said that, I just wasn't prepared for the overwhelming response that followed the Oscars, and the release of my book, and the concerts, and well, you know, so many people kept asking me about it and Karenna and Kristin started asking me about it, and well, I started to re-think it."  

I am neither absolutely convinced that he will, or that he won't.  

It does kind of get to be "Waiting for Godot" though, doesn't it?  

by Jbearlaw 2007-02-16 12:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Beat me to the "Sherman Statement" analysis.  It'd be interesting to search about and see what Obama and others were saying about '08 a while back.  I bet it's pretty similar.  It's certainly similar to what past candidates have said in years past.

I understand it must be pretty tiresome to people like Chris or Kos to continually have to deal with people beating on them to include Gore in their various pols.  If I were in their position, I'd be looking for certainty.  I just don't think any statement short of an actual Sherman statement will give that.

by micarrdc 2007-02-16 12:52PM | 0 recs
I think its the inability to imagine ...

... any circumstances in which he would run.

The scenarios that people keep painting would all fall into the "easy to imagine" box.

The roof falling in during a Democratic presidential debate and the whole field being out of action ... stepping in under that circumstance is probably not ruled out. Unlikely to happen, though (touch wood).

by BruceMcF 2007-02-16 02:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I agree with Steve.  It has been common parlance to talk about intentions as a dodge to leave the door open at least as far back as the 60's.  Goldwater resisted draft entreaties through the 60 election and continued to do so until late '63, all the while laying plans to actually run.  Similarly with Lodge in the same election.  In fact, he used much stronger language that Gore has used, again while secretly planning a strategy to swoop in as late as weeks before the NH primary.  

Reporters have rightly constructed the standard of the "Sherman statement" in response to this phenomenon:  Unless they issue a statement like General Sherman's telegraph to the 1884 Republican Convention "I will not accept if nominated and will not serve if elected" the door is considered open.  Gore is a seasoned politician.  He is well aware of what the standards are here.  I frankly don't see how the second statement really adds anything.  He's saying he's not thinking about it so he's not crafting scenarios.  If he did actually say there was a scenario then he would effectively be putting himself in, as his supporters would immediately set about making those circumstances happen.  Think Lamont's criteria of 1000 volunteers in CT.

Nothing is more powerful than the public impression that you were "drafted" by the public to serve.  I'm not saying Gore is holding out for this, rather just that he knows exactly what to say to shut the door completely and he is declining to do so.

by micarrdc 2007-02-16 12:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

In fact, I'm pretty sure Gore has specifically made reference to the "Sherman statement" concept in the past.  He knows precisely what words to use if he wants to rule out further speculation.

As I said above, I'm really tired of having to go through this exact same argument every week or two.

by Steve M 2007-02-16 01:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Yeah, and I'm afraid we're in for this dance for quite a while to come.  My sense is Gore is really sensitive to the various things he's doing on climate being characterized as political theater so he's not going to get in (if he does) until after at least his summer concert event.  If he really has a shot at the Nobel prize then I'd suppose he'd wait until after that as well.  

It looks like a long summer of re-parsing essentially the same statements.

by micarrdc 2007-02-16 01:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I believe the peace prize is announced in December?  Gore will have to move to be on the New Hampshire ballot in November.  

by Winston Smith 2007-02-16 11:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

The prize is awarded in a Ceremony on December 10th (the day Aldred Nobel died, in 1896), but it is announced well in advance, usually on a Friday in mid-October.

If Al Gore actually does get the Nobel peace prize this year, that could indeed be the "unimaginable" circumstance. (Though, for various reasons, unlikely, but that's matter for a whole diary.)

by PoliticGeek Pro 2007-02-17 02:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

That just sounds a lot like the way Al Gore talks. To me that was part of the problem in 2000. So many activists around the progressive blogosphere were clinging to his denials because they could be construed as open to interpretation. Ironically that form of communication may be part of the reason why he's not in his 7th year of being President right now.  

by mihan 2007-02-16 01:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

This is the point I was going to make, too. I think Gore is just not given to blanket statements. He's a really careful guy, very attuned to the subtle shadings of what he says. He knows that it's not exactly true that he'd never run again, because there may be some weird confluence of events that forces a run upon him. He just can't imagine what that confluence would be.

It's still not a blanket denial, though. So, it's a "non-denial denial" in that way (I called it that in a previous diary). But, I'm more impressed by the lack of wiggle room in it than I was before. He doesn't leave himself all that much room to get into a race there.

I've pretty much given up the ghost on Gore running anyway (I just had a feeling about a month ago that it wasn't happening), so I don't see this as a huge change.

I'm pretty sure he's out barring a massive series of scandals, mishaps, and other bizarre events that decimates the Democratic field. It's time to turn our attention elsewhere.

by BriVT 2007-02-16 02:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Haven't you ever done something that you couldn't imagine doing in the past?

I'm sure he never imagined being nominated for an Oscar, or for a Nobel Peace prize. I'm sure he never imagined organizing something like Live Earth.  If he does run, the unimaginable circumstance will be his campaign platform. In any event his comment did nothing to close the door. It just generated more speculation, like what's going on here. Things that make you go hmmmmm.

by misscee 2007-02-17 07:52AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

If enough people ask Gore to run he will run.

Gore has the experience, he has been right on every issue, he has support in every part of the Democratic coalition, not just netroots, not just progressives. Every other candidate is wholly inferior. If we settle for less than Gore we are cheating ourselves.

by Alice Marshall 2007-02-16 11:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?
If we refuse to support anyone except a candidate that isn't running we would also be deluding ourselves.
by Chris Bowers 2007-02-16 12:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

The way out of this IMO is to support a backup candidate that we also like.  A lot of Clarkies did this with Dean in 2004, and then jumped back to Clark when he announced.

Trouble for me is that I can't decide just who should be my backup candidate.  Edwards, Obama, Richardson, and Clark are all in the running for my support.  And I don't like any of them as much as I liked Dean in 2004.

by Nonpartisan 2007-02-16 12:53PM | 0 recs
There is about a year, before one needs

to make that choice, Chris. At least 9-10 months, till say November or even December.

As such, many Gore supporters do have a second in line choice (in my case, Obama or Richardson, at the current time, with some reservations) from the current (sub-optimal, if you will) crop, from what I can tell.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 02:21PM | 0 recs
Re: There is about a year, before one needs

 I agree about Gore, and I have my own one-per-cent solution in that department -- if there's still a 1% chance that Gore will run, I go to bed with hope that night.

 But I disagree that it's a "suboptimal" field. Take out Hillary and it's one of the best Democratic fields in decades. I would be very proud and enthused to cast a general election vote for Obama, Richardson, Edwards, Vilsack, or Dodd.

by Master Jack 2007-02-16 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I'm with you now, Chris. I think this is as close as Albert Gore can get himself to a blanket statement. This is just the inscrutable way he talks sometimes (and I love the guy). I keep drifting further and further toward the thought:

He's out.

by BriVT 2007-02-16 03:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out? 5/politics/main533080.shtml

"I've decided that I will not be a candidate for president in 2004," Gore told Lesley Stahl. "I personally have the energy and drive and ambition to make another campaign, but I don't think that it's the right thing for me to do."

That's how you exclude yourself from the race and cease all speculation to the contrary. Al Gore knows exactly what's he's saying and how he's saying it and how it will be interpreted.

There are many things that can happen between now and 2008, especially with these sociopaths in charge of the country, and the Dems not willing (or, in the Senate case, able) to stand up for what's right.

He is not ruling out a 2008 run.

by lightyearsfromhome 2007-02-16 03:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Maybe. I think he's out, though. He's a really smart guy, and he has a lot of wonderful things he wants to get done. I think, unlike in 2004, he is ready to be in the spotlight now, so there's some miniscule chance that he would do it, which is why he says that. Plus, it doesn't hurt his causes to have this extra push to the publicity of what he does.

But he's just painting himself into a tight box with that extra sentence, and he just doesn't look like a guy who's going to run. Even folks that play it coy do certain political things, like stump for a network of candidates the year before and go around giving speeches to political audiences. But Al's doing exactly what he says he's doing: doing high-profile events that further his causes.

I'm just uncynical about Al; I believe him. I suppose if no Democrats talked about global warming, and the GOP kept up its facade of denial ... then maybe he'd jump in. But all the Democrats are talking about it, and Bill Richardson is pretty much making it a centerpiece. So I think Al's moving away from any thoughts of it.

by BriVT 2007-02-16 04:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I think many Gore suppporters tend to forget that he lost to Georgw W. Bush! That election should never have been close. I don't care how qualified Gore is, nobody who loses to Bush deserves a second chance.  

by bsavage 2007-02-16 01:19PM | 0 recs
Please explore the following facts and analyses

The 2000 Presidential election: A Synopsis

Clinton got impeached (he shouldn't have been, but he was reckless in the first place; and, Gore stood in support of Clinton on the day of impeachment. Painfully, Clinton also got caught lying to the American public), made Gore pay the price with double-digit deficits, media screwed democracy over, Nader (whose important contributions in the 60s and 70s I respect, and who recently had pleasant meeting with Gore) mischaracterized Gore in 2000 and allowed himself to be used as a GOP-pawn and forced Gore to write-off TN and other southern states in the final weeks.

Still Gore won the popular vote, and won Florida, fought for 35 days to get all the votes counted, withdrew in disagreement when no recourse was left following the supreme court verdict and the DNC chairman called on him to concede, and nearly 80% of Americans wanted Gore to concede should the Supreme Court rule against him.

See here for more:

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 02:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Please explore the following facts and analyse

there he is! Its almost like someone rang the doorbell at your place.

by mihan 2007-02-16 02:39PM | 0 recs
was that personal tripe needed?

If so, then, why are you here, like someone rang the doorbell at your place?

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: was that personal tripe needed?

I'm here because I've read the thread and offered comments, as I do often on this site as well as dkos. Pointing that you've once again provided a rebuttal to someone who expressed skepticism that Al Gore didn't win the last election didn't exactly take a special effort on my part.

I'll have to hand it to you...I've never wanted anything as badly as you want Al Gore to be President. I don't know whether to help you or feel sorry for you. Probably the latter. I actually mention you to people at work just to illustrate the futility of dealing with this site sometimes.

by mihan 2007-02-16 05:12PM | 0 recs
please spare your personal feelings for

people in your life. And spare the silly attemps of denigration, just because you can't have things the way you want them. And, stay on the topic, instead of making things personal without a need for doing so.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 05:49PM | 0 recs
Re: please spare your personal feelings for

Sorry about that. Didn't mean to hurt your feelings. I hope this Gore thing really works out for you.

by mihan 2007-02-16 05:56PM | 0 recs
Re: please spare your personal feelings for

how kind of you for such benevolence.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 05:59PM | 0 recs
Re: please spare your personal feelings for

Why so testy? How is it you plan to have any involvement in politics at all if you have such thin  skin?

by mihan 2007-02-16 06:17PM | 0 recs
Re: please spare your personal feelings for

This isn't about me; it's about good causes. I started posting at these blogs because I was extremely concerned about the direction of the country.

In the process of the ensuing dialogue, I came to grasp that Gore would make an amazingly good President at this point of time, reinforcing my earlier respect and regard for him.

Let us not waste too much space/time talking about me.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 06:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Please explore the following facts and analyse

I agree with bsavage on this one. Gore's team made a whole bunch of terrible strategic decisions that allowed him to be mischaracterized from start to finish. I think Gore would have been (and would be) a great president, I think his political instincts are terrible and completely disqualify him from running for president.

Gore and Kerry, both great guys with limited charisma and the inability to assemble a proper campaign team or follow a winning strategy.

by nstrauss 2007-02-16 03:19PM | 0 recs
I think the handicaps were severe

as I document in detail in my synopsis (please do click the links in order and explore). No one is saying the Gore campaign did not make mistakes.

But, in the face of significant further complicating obstacles (such as relentless and incorrigible media spins and smears; again please check the links), they did pull from double digit deficits to post a popular vote victory and what was almost certainly an electoral college victory as well.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 03:48PM | 0 recs
Re: I think the handicaps were severe

And yet -- Gore's performance just wasn't good enough.

Do you think that the smears aren't going to happen this time around? Think again.

The smears will happen. The real question is, how will our candidate handle it? Well enough to win 50% of the vote? Sorry, that won't cut it.

So we both think Gore's campaign made big mistakes. You think so, I think so, everybody thinks so. So now we say, in spite of the mistakes that he made, he did pretty well? Maybe he did. Look, I'm not saying that Gore had nothing going for him. What I'm saying is, he made some serious mistakes. He had his chance and he made serious mistakes that cost him the election. That should be the end of any politician's presidential aspirations.

Let's put it this way. Right now, things are looking pretty good for the Dems' chances (as they did this time around in '99). Let's say Gore wins the nomination. Things change on the ground. Gore is faced with some serious challenges, but his campaign makes some critical mistakes that cost us the White House. What do you say then? Aw, he was dealt a rough hand, and man he would have made a great president? Sure. We could go on like that for a hundred years.

by nstrauss 2007-02-17 05:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Please explore the following facts and analyse

I remeber everybody saying that there was no difference between Gore and Bush back in 2000. Gore should have won in a landslide. He should have campaigned with Clinton, that would have been more than enough to beat Bush. Gore has reinvented himself and its great what he as done for the environment. However, I think we need to give someone else a chance for 2008.

by bsavage 2007-02-16 06:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Please explore the following facts and analyse

Since you apparently had not explored as I had requested, I am now having to post why Clinton was a severe handicap for the Gore campaign and hence your proposition "He should have campaigned with Clinton", is unfortuntely a mythological concept that was created by Clinton folks to clear Clinton of his negative impact on the election:

Clinton campaign effort could hurt Gore more than help, poll suggests

From staff and wire reports

October 24, 2000

But a recent Gallup poll shows Clinton's high job approval ratings are unlikely to translate into gains for the vice president.


Overall, 17 percent of all voters say they would be more likely to vote for Gore if Clinton were to campaign for the vice president. But 40 percent said they were less likely to vote for Gore with Clinton stumping for him, and 40 percent said that would have no effect.

Among independent voters, the net loss for Gore could be far greater: Gallup's survey indicated that 45 percent of independents would be less likely to vote for the vice president if Clinton were to campaign for him, while only 10 percent said they would be more likely to support Gore. Another 37 percent of independents said Clinton's efforts would make no difference.

That's not all. Please do me a favor and visit this link to explore the topic of Clinton's impact at great length. And, then please go over the links in my earlier comment tonight and over the weekend. Thanks.

by NuevoLiberal 2007-02-16 06:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Please explore the following facts and analyse

Nuevo, your tone is arrogant and you're not being fair with your references. First off, there is lots of evidence that opposes your viewpoint. Cherry-picking analyses and polls that support your position, and saying that this somehow "proves" you correct, is simply illogical. It's what Rush Limbaugh does in every show.

Second, these polls that "suggest" things like that are so flimsy. They're interesting, but you have to apply a huge grain of salt. I mean, even if the poll numbers are accurate and stable, there is someone in an office making a questionable assessment that the numbers "suggest" the conclusion. And then, it's just a suggestion. It doesn't take into account all of the other factors that people cited for how Clinton could have helped Gore.

I don't have a very strong opinion on that particular subject. If I recall, there were lots of arguments and evidence going in both directions on that one. Implying that one poll proves you right is pretty ridiculous.

by nstrauss 2007-02-17 05:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?
That's fine, except that Gore actually won the election. What you could properly say is that it should not have been as close as it was. But people can learn from their mistakes, contra Shrub. It's was clear in 2004 that Gore understood the mistakes he'd made.
Hillary doesn't have a clue on that front.
by lightyearsfromhome 2007-02-16 03:45PM | 0 recs
you can see the video at bbc website

not sure how to do a direct linmk, but I went to

searched for Al Gore, and it was on the right hand side as the 16 Feb interview.

I agree he said exactly what the quote above says.  It is very clearcut

by John DE 2007-02-16 12:00PM | 0 recs
by John DE 2007-02-16 12:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I'm going to cry.  Please, Al Gore, don't make me cry...


by Lassallean 2007-02-16 12:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I believe Gore would have been a far better president than bush in 2000. I also believe he would have been an even better president in 04 or 08 than in 00, with the ability to draw on his the experience of his loss and the resulting debacle.

BUT, the reality is that Gore's approve/disapprove is still net negative nationally (at least as of the last time Somerby mentioned it, within the past couple weeks).

I think Gore knows this - I think that the hit job that was done for 20 months before the 00 election decimated his reputation among the low info voters permanently. Even if it didn't then, the attacks on him that have continued over the past 6 years  - he has been called "crazy", "fat", and many other perjorative adjectives - has cemented his high negatives.

Those to blame include not only by those on Fox, but "liberal" columnists that many now like, such as Frank Rich of the NYT's.

Simply put, I can understand Gore's decision. (Assuming the quote is accurate it as close to a Sherman-esqe statement as you're going to get).

The lesson to be drawn is not to allow any of our candidates to be fileted like he was without a fight. That means that even reporters like Dana Milbank (who is always on Hardball, and never called out by KO) and E.J. Dionne need to be vociferously objected to and made to report news, not their feelings.

AS for Gore - he still has a role to play, even if it isn't as a candidate. If the past 6 years show anything about him, it is that he will be able to maintain his relevancy

by melandell 2007-02-16 12:04PM | 0 recs
One Benchmark

2002 (<3 years until election): Dylan Malone, founder of, was asked by Gore to stop his draft activities.

2007 (<2 years until election): Dylan Malone, founder of, has not been asked by Gore to stop his draft activities.

Source: GNN is a free service of, 2/15 email

by marksist 2007-02-16 12:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I was for John Edwards whether Gore ran or not, although I like the post-2000 Gore a lot.

I think many, but certainly not all, of those who wanted Gore will migrate to Edwards eventually.  Some may stop off for a time with Obama, but I think his tendency toward centrism will cause liberals to leave him over time.  

For example, Obama appears to support the Hamilton Project.  He also introduced the "Coal-To-Liquid Fuel Promotion Act of 2007" with Jim Bunning this year.  It would be hard to reconcile his introduction of a CTL bill with the environmentalism of many Gore supporters.  Europe is not seriously considering investing in the CTL technology because they are signers of the Kyoto protocol and have pledged to reduce their greenhouse emissions.  

by littafi 2007-02-16 12:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Ooooo, the scary Hamilton Project. Obama "appears to support" it. Sounds terrible. Whatever.

Coal to liquids is a way of using abundant (in the U.S.) coal to replace scarce oil as a transportation fuel. Economics of it are not there yet.

But the bottom line is that Obama favors CO2 eimmission CAPS, so whatever the carbon based fuel mix (gas, coal, and oil), the TOTAL CO2 emmissions would be capped.

Edwards is good, too. As is Richardson. Hell, Hillary is a decent candidate. We're blessed with a GREAT FIELD on our side this time around.

by demondeac 2007-02-16 12:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I guess you wouldn't support Brian Schweitzer either.

by yitbos96bb 2007-02-16 02:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

And Obama is far from a Centrist... He is a progressive.  A simple look at his issues and his record prove that.  

by yitbos96bb 2007-02-16 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Gore is out.  Period.  I don't know why anyone still thinks he might run.  But he still polls above Edwards...

by Sandwich Repairman 2007-02-16 12:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I will abandon my hopes for a Gore run when he yells from the mountaintops, with god as his witness, that he will never, ever pursue the presidency, and then proceeds to call for a full dismantling of the draft movement.

Until then, why would anyway have an issue with some of us holding out hope? In what way is it harmful?

by LandStander 2007-02-16 12:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Not harmful.  But not gonna happen.  I don't see why anyone would particularly want him to run anyway.  Champion of the 1996 welfare destruction law, and the 1991 Persian Gulf War, misled Americans on the merits of NAFTA...

If we're going to nominate a retread in 2008, it should be Jimmy Carter.

by Sandwich Repairman 2007-02-16 07:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I guess I'm just a true believer in the "New Gore". I didn't vote for him in 2000 (Nader voter, but in CA, so it's ok :-) and agree with your criticisms. But forget that, here, have some kool-aid!

by LandStander 2007-02-18 04:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

That's ironic since, voting absentee from across the country on Election Day, I felt compelled by the polls to vote for Gore in WA in 2000.  I traded my vote for a Nader one somewhere else.  The 1997 inauguration made me regret my vote for Clinton/Gore.  So far I've voted for Democratic presidential nominees all 3 chances I got.  Not sure I want to continue that trend if Hillary wins the nod...

Gore has lots of great qualities, don't get me wrong.  I think he's a person of good honor and integrity--not dirty or corrupted--and has excellent experience to be president.  He's been great about criticizing BushCo, the war, and civil liberties violations (I attended the 2003 speech he gave put on by MoveOn and the lefty law student group whose name escapes me, and was pleased).  In 1992 I had really hoped he'd run again (he didn't in the aftermath of his son's car accident and re-evaluating his life, which I can identify with).  I thought then, as I do now, that in many ways he'd have been a better President than Bill Clinton.  He sure would've been more successful with health care!  

But looking at his record in the Senate, or even just as VP, I think it's hard to go through a sober analysis and see him as a liberal savior.  I'm not even sure where I stand on trade, but his role persuading Clinton to sign the 1996 welfare law alone leaves an awful taste in my mouth that isn't likely to go away.  I do have elevated affinity for him because of the fact that he won the 2000 election and was prevented from taking office.  And I liked Inconvenient Truth pretty well (except that it didn't mention peak oil or talk about the need to reduce car sales and use entirely) and his global warming efforts.  But he's not a hero.  I really think he has moved on, and I feel like we need to do the same.  For now I am happy with Obama.

by Sandwich Repairman 2007-02-19 10:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

If you don't mind me dragging the convo on a bit...

I think part of his appeal is beyond policy position and track record - in my view he is, in part, a hero. He has taken an epic hero's journey, starting as just another lousy 'establishment' heir to the throne, fell from grace at the hands of a cabal, "found" himself while out in the woods, and reemerged a different man (it seems :-).
And there is just so much poetic justice in Gore finally taking his rightful place in the WH, that it inspires me and gives me hope where there usually is none (American politics).

I have lots of practical reasons, too. But I think this sums up why I, and many others, continue to hold our breaths and turn blue in the face as we hope and pray for a Gore run.

by LandStander 2007-02-22 12:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Draft him he owes us. This country is SOL without leadership. And the only one close to being a leader is Obama and he is unproven. Draft GORE / Obama and lets end this shit before it starts.

by KevinB 2007-02-16 12:27PM | 0 recs
I don't believe in a draft movement

I wish he would run though. Maybe he's too rich and comfortable now and wants to play the statesman role. I agree with Chris on his analysis.

I think the only way Gore would run if someone close to him convinced him that it's his obligation to do so. When he asks us, all the world to do whatever they can do make things better, why, then, wouldn't he be part of DOING WHATEVER HE COULD to save the planet and improve the conditions in the US?????!!!  A US president (OK, a wise president) can do a lot more than a popular individual as a privite citizen.

Chris, do you know anyone who could pose this angle to Gore?

by Andros 2007-02-16 12:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Times change...but that statement looks definate to me.

by howardpark 2007-02-16 12:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Look, this isn't even funny to joke about.  This is another form of the same old non-denial denial he's given plenty of times. Has anyone read the freaking New York Observer story that he hasn't denied?????? 9_Steve_Kornacki_politics_wiseguys.asp

Here is the Hotline entry about him not denying the story:

Gore Doesn't Really Knock Down The New York Observer Story
LOS ANGELES - Ex-VP Al Gore repeated his I'm-not-running-in-`08 stance here Thursday as he focused instead on a July 7th global concert tied into his Oscar-nominated global warming movie.

"I haven't changed my answer about politics in quite a few years now," said Gore.

When asked about a New York Observer story this week which reported that he is keeping his `08 options open until September, Gore shook his head but said "I have no intention of running for president again and I'm involved in a different kind of campaign. And persuading other people in this country and all over the world that we have to solve the climate crisis is a position that I feel very passionately about and I'm devoting myself to it."

But like most Oscar nominees this month, Gore has been in campaign mode to win an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature for his concert-spawning, slideshow-driven film, "An Inconvenient Truth."
Gore's Hollywood profile has remained high lately thanks partly to his presence earlier this week at The Grammy Awards; on Thursday he mentioned that there too his global concert attracted attention, with Gore saying that members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers told him, "`we're in.'"

All Academy Award voting ends next Tuesday. "I don't want to jinx that whole deal by talking about it," said the former veep, who also is growing tired of his global warming critics. "I'm running outta things to say to them. Look, this has been well known for a long time."

Like the global Live Aid concert for African famine relief in 1985, Gore's 24-hour, July 7th concert aspires to attract about two billion people through live broadcast and online performances on all seven continents - including what he said would be, "the first live musical performance originating from Antarctica." Gore's cable channel Current TV also will display viewer-created global warming messages and art during the concert. [DAVID FINNIGAN] rchives/2007/02/gore_doesnt_rea.html


by IsThisOverYet 2007-02-16 12:45PM | 0 recs
No Sherman statement

I'm inclined to think Gore won't run, but what he said wasn't a Sherman statement ("If nominated I will not run, if elected I will not serve"), so I wouldn't write him off yet. There's still some wiggle room if he decides to run or feels a "draft." At least this way, the press will stay off his ass and he can be a statesmen who is above the fray. Not a bad strategy either.

by Phil from New York 2007-02-16 12:48PM | 0 recs
Gore is a good man.

I know many will be sorry if he doesn't run. I couldn't belive he Lost in 2000, I was working the polls and couldn't believe it.

I am for Edwards this time, and I hope the ticket doesn't get split this time and throw it toward the other side. Another republican run would really hurt so many americans.

by dk2 2007-02-16 12:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Gore is a good man.

Gore didn't really lose...but he did run an awful campaign.

by Sandwich Repairman 2007-02-19 10:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

This is exactly what he has been saying for months.

However, he could remove all doubt if he as he did in 2004 say:

"I will not run for president. Period.  Full stop."

This is by no means a Shermanesque statement.

Additionally, there was no attempt to stop the Draft Gore meeting in Boston.

I think Gore is probably in.

by nanorich 2007-02-16 12:59PM | 0 recs
devil's advocate

Let's say for instance that Gore has 99% ruled out running again. However, there still remains that 1% that is intrigued and interested in a campaign for president.

What is the incentive for him to admit explicitly to that 1% chance? He knows how the media operates. He knows that simply admitting to a tiny bit of interest will turn into a front page headline on USA Today, "Gore Considering Presidential Run" or some such. Any explicit acknowledgement of even a tiny bit of interest would seriously mess up his life generally. It would destroy some of the climate change-related partnerships he's put together and would inhibit others from working with him for fear that it was all a ruse to get himself elected.

He also is dealing with a pre-existing media problem in that he has a reputation as a serial exaggerator, or in general not being truthful. That gives him an incentive to make statements that are comprehensive without being conclusive. There's a reason he always leaves himself an out in his statements. He's consistently set himself up to say at a future date, "Unforseen circumstances have come about, my country now needs me, therefore I am changing my mind about running".

In short, Gore has no incentive to admit that he's interested in running until he's actually ready to get in the race. If he never becomes interested, then he's fine. If he does become interested, he's left himself rhetorical space to explain his change in attitude. Point is: we won't know if he's running until September/October.

After believing Obama's clever little act throughout '05 and  '06 of claiming explicitly that he wasn't going to run but then conveniently changing his mind later on, I personally am going to be careful about ruling out a Gore run until he's completely bars the door. He gave a shermanesque statement in 2002; he refuses to do so now. There's something going on.

by blueflorida 2007-02-16 01:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Don't you people get it yet?

Gore has his sights set much higher than POTUS.  Gore is running for President of the World.

by Disputo 2007-02-16 01:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Or at least Secretary of the Planet.

by Shaun Appleby 2007-02-16 04:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

or perhaps Ambassador of Earth.

by misscee 2007-02-17 08:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Am I the only one who just can't get excited about the current field of candidates?  Yes, I'd support Richardson or Edwards, but there's just nobody who seems to care passionately about anything.  I think that's part of why Gore is appealing to so many people right now.

by mlr701 2007-02-16 01:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

There are always people who feel that way.  I definitely did in 2004.  Funny thing about US politics, you ask people if we need more parties and more choices and they overwhelmingly say yes, but whenever they have them, they still vote Democratic or Republican.  Or, no more people vote in the primary than did or would have otherwise.  I'm overstating this phenemenon a little, but not much.

In Annie Hall, Woody Allen's opening includes an anecdote about an old couple who go out to dinner at a restaurant they don't like.  One of them says, "The food here is awful!"  And the other replies, "Yeah, and such small portions!"  Understood the way Woody meant it, I think that applies to a lot in life.

by Sandwich Repairman 2007-02-19 10:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?
'I have no intention of running' and 'I can't imagine...' are equivocations, not statements of intent.
'I am not running' is a clear message with no wiggle room.
by kamajii 2007-02-16 01:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

I don't think Gore ever intended to run. Why should he? He has gained elder statesman status. Why throw that away to enter a race that he could possibly lose.

Personally I think his statements on running are deliberately misleading because he likes to yank Hillary's chain. A little paybackski to the Clintons.

by pelican 2007-02-16 01:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Well, if he's that much of a vindictive prick, then I really, really, really want him to run!

by BingoL 2007-02-16 02:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

A little paybackski to the Clintons.

What is he paying the Clintons back for?  His own refusal to let them campaign for him in 2000?

by Disputo 2007-02-16 05:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

You know, guys & gals, "denial" is not a river in Egypt.   As Chris says, we're supposed to be reality-based.  Some of you are acting like high schoolers the night before the prom, still hoping the Queen (King) will go out with you.   Suck it up and move on.  I hear there's an org for the latter. I've stumbled onto something.

by InigoMontoya 2007-02-16 02:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Ad-hominem invective is unnecessary and insulting. If Gore is in, he gets my vote. If he's not, it goes to someone else. It's not as if I'm going to save my 2008 primary vote in a bottle, forever waiting for the perfect candidate.

by lightyearsfromhome 2007-02-16 03:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Yes he is   (the King of the Prom.) That's the point.

by misscee 2007-02-17 09:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Al Gore is very respectful of tradition, at least I think. If he does not want to run I wan him to give us a Sherman Statement.

by Abraham Running For Congress When I Turn 25 2007-02-16 02:17PM | 0 recs
Gore will run if enough people ask him to

and there is no reason to make a commitment to another candidate. Should Gore not run you can always work for whoever did get the nomination.

by Alice Marshall 2007-02-16 02:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Yoo-hoo. This is what he has been saying since his movie came out. he's done hundreds of interviews and he says the same thing evey time. Not running. I won't rule out a run someday, but no plans today to run.

by mrobinsong 2007-02-16 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Gore lost: oops, he didn't. He won the popular vote. In other democracies that's good enough but not here. Our electoral college system reveals a lack of faith in adult citizens to choose the president. All by themselves with no help from our 'betters." It's so patronizing!

Gore received more votes than Clinton did in either of his elections when Clinton had someone running to his right, taking votes from Daddy Bush. Gore got more votes than any Democrat ever, despite someone runnin to his left.

Don't say Gore lost. We're the ones who lost.

by mrobinsong 2007-02-16 02:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

As much as I'd love to see Gore get in, he didn't get more votes than any other Democrat ever.  Another guy did--goes by the name of John Kerry.

The five highest vote totals for President ever are:

1.  Bush

  1.  Kerry
  2.  Reagan ('84)
  3.  Gore
  4.  Bush ('00)

Makes me ill to see Bush up there, but there it is.

by rayspace 2007-02-17 07:48AM | 0 recs
Say it ain't so, Al! n/t

by Coral 2007-02-16 03:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Gore is not running.  

You can't get any clearer than "I have no intention to run for president," and "I can't imagine in any circumstance to run for office again."

He is in a different field.  Running for president isn't part of that plan, IMHO.

I agree with Chris that most of the Gore support will migrate to HRC eventually.  

by georgep 2007-02-16 03:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

You can't get any clearer than "I have no intention to run for president," and "I can't imagine in any circumstance to run for office again."

Oh, yes you can. 64535/225/55#55

by lightyearsfromhome 2007-02-16 03:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Look, he said "I have no intention to run for president."  We are supposed to believe he is just playing word games to see if there is a groundswell of support, a wave of sorts, to force him to make a "reluctant" run, sort of saying "Well, I had no intention to run, but the candidates currently running are so weak, and I am apparently so beloved, I found it my duty to listen to that and run to serve my country."  

It won't happen.  He won't claim the rest of the candidate's to be utterly weak, which kind of forced his hand.  That would not only damage the field of Democrats running and play into the Republican's hand, it would be very much unlike Al Gore.    No word games.  Just realistic statements that should be clear by now.  He moved on.  He can make a lot more money with what he is doing now, and perhaps make even a bigger difference for the planet's environment.  Why would he give all that up?  

by georgep 2007-02-16 04:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Right now the Oscar for Best Documentary is still hanging.  An overly assertive statement that he might run could sour that.   If he is planning to run, he wants and needs that Oscar.  A lot of people in Hollywood don't like overly political things-- they don't call it Tinseltown for nothing.    Why should he screw that up to keep people like us happy?

So this should be expected.  

And I also agree that if he really just had ruled it out, that he would be denying the NY Observer story and asking the Draft Gore folks to lay off.  But he is not.

So let's not overreact.  There are always many bumps and twists on the path to the White House.  

by tea in the harbor 2007-02-16 04:06PM | 0 recs

It's all about the Oscar!


by Disputo 2007-02-16 05:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Say what you will about Gore he obviously leads the field in downright contrarian loyalty; a sterling quality among activists.

by Shaun Appleby 2007-02-16 04:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Whatever it means, Gore says the exact same thing each time:

1) I have no active plans to run ("and I'm not trying to be coy")

2) I am not closing the door because it is conceivable that some day I may feel differently.

Do not try to parse his words. Look at his actions.

Every single action he is taking seems like it is in preparation for something bigger.  No wasted effort.  No projects that don't look good on the resume.  It's as if he is readying for the Right Time.  Maybe that's why he hasn't closed the door.  Gore's stature has grown hugely over the past 6 years.  It is no accident.  Moveon, Global Warming, Gore and Blood Investment Fund, Apple Computer, Google, Current TV.  These are all Gore initiatives.  And in them, Gore has undermined every bit of unfair bullshit media steriotype thrown his way.  

by mccormac98 2007-02-16 05:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

No, there's a simple explanation of how he could run again: he's lying.

With a politican, it's not unheard of, ya know.

by dwbh 2007-02-16 06:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Is it possible that the circumstance which Gore cannot imagine is that Hillary Clinton will no longer be in the race, or will have so far self-destructed on her own that he would not have to run against her.  I am sure that Gore does not want to run againt Bill Clinton. The reason this non-denial denial is stronger is that Hillary is the strongest candidate at this time.  

That might mean, for those in love with Gore, that working for Edwards or Obama, such that Hillary is no longer a credible candidate would be the most we could do to help get Gore in the race.  But so far, it's not really even imaginable that she will, in the near future, poll below either of them, much less cease to be a strong candidate.  If that is what Gore is waiting for, he is probably right that that scenario will not happen.

To look at things from his point of view, he has two true passions: Global Warming and Journalism.  He may feel that he can speak truer on those two subjects, and possibly do more about them, as an influencial non-politician.  And he may be right.  He is persuading even the "capitalists" that it is in their interests to attack Global Warming. Maybe he can make the issue of improved journalism as glamorous as he has made Global Warming.

by prince myshkin 2007-02-17 12:53AM | 0 recs
Time to hedge our bets

While I would still love to see Mr. Gore run, and would support him avidly if he did, I'm starting to think it's time to pick another candidate.

Obama? I don't think one-term Senators are ready to be president.  Hillary?  Iraq war vote.  Flag burning amendment.  Forget her.  I'm intrigued by Richardson, but I need to learn more.

I'll vote for the Democratic nominee, whoever it is, but Gore was the only potential candidate who really got me excited.

by xebecs 2007-02-17 03:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Does This Mean Gore Is Definitely Out?

Am I the only one here surprised to learn that Chris Bowers, Mr MyDD, has spent much of his life being educated in "post-structuralist critical theory?"  Fuck me!  After two and a half years reading MyDD, I had no idea.  His writing his so clear and accessible that one might think his exposure to theory ended with the new-criticalists.  I congradulate Mr Bowers on forgoing decentered subjects for more pedestrian constructs such as "concensus reality."  

My own exposure to deconstuctionalism was, thankfully, backward.  As a student of classical philology and historiography, I would often be burdened with translation assignments which required me to review modern commentary.  After going through 200 years of modern scholarship, I would invariably end up finding myself having to deal with some recent 18 page article written by Dr Darcy Nobody from some second-rate "English" faculty who published an article in "Radical Herstory Review," and then would have to spend several days wading through Saussure and the other French pseudo-intellectuals ctied therein ad nauseum to figure out what fuck she was talkin about.  

It stopped surprising me that the hordes of tenure-starved post-structuralist academics, with no discernable acquaintance with Greek, or ancient literature, were really just using a Penguin Classics translation of an ancient text to demonstate their own knowledge of French theory, adding nothing to the scholarship of the work itself.  But I still had to explain their take on the text, and I learned to apply a handy trick I call "deconstructing deconstructionism."  I highly recommended this to anyone interested in mental masturbation.  

I was going to write a diary applying post-structural theory on Mr Bowers own writing.  Call it something like, "WHAT WOULD FOUCAULT SAY?! :  The Phallocentric Power Discourse of Chris Bowers."  I decided not to though; I didnt want him to think I was being fucking nasty.  

Anyhoo, on to Good Ole Al Gore.  Chris has made it clear over the years that potential candidates must meet certain criteria to be included in his straw poll.  The criteria are somewhat flexible.  For instance, Gore can be included in Novembers of even-numbered years, as long as the poll is posted in the early morning hours between 1 and 3 am.  Clark has to form an exploratory committee by the ides of March, or he will be cut down, metaphorically speaking, in the Senate chamber.  I think Obama has to cut down to half a pack a day, or switch to a cheap generic brand, or something like that.  

But, as I understand the rules, a potential candidate has to express interest, raise money though a political action committee, and assemble staff or an exploratory committee.  Fair enough.  

Now, I have criteria to discount Gore as a candidate.  One of two will do it.  He has to either state that he will not run without equivication.  Gore's own commentary on the Sherman statement, (" I am not making a sherman statement") makes it clear that he understands the importance of this.  "I am not running", sans intend, is pretty easy to muster up.  

Or, he has to endorse another candidate.  This is, in fact, the clearest indication that he does not see himself as a potential candidate.  

by Winston Smith 2007-02-17 03:37AM | 0 recs


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