March 31st, 2008
01:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Gore: I am no 'Boss Tweed'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Gore said Sunday he does not anticipate getting involved in the presidential race."]

(CNN) - His name continues to get mentioned as a Democratic elder who could hammer out a resolution in his party's deadlocked presidential race, but former Vice President Al Gore said Sunday he's not interested in the job.

"I'm trying to stay out of it," the former vice president said on CBS' "60 Minutes" of the prolonged race for the White House.

"I'm not applying for the job of broker," he also said when pressed about the possibility he will be one of the few neutral Democrats who could sit Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton down together.

The comments follow increased speculation that Gore, the party's 2000 presidential nominee, may be called to forge a compromise between the two candidates, or even appear on the top of the presidential ticket himself.

In the interview Sunday, Gore laughed off that role as a modern day 'Boss Tweed.'

But last week, Democratic Rep. Tim Mahoney of Florida suggested Gore, the party’s 2000 presidential nominee, could assume the role of a compromise candidate if neither Clinton nor Obama could reach a deal themselves.

"If it goes into the convention, don’t be surprised if someone different is at the top of the ticket,” he told a Florida newspaper, adding Gore could be that choice.

Gore shrugged off that suggestion: "I doubt very seriously that I'll ever be a candidate again," he said. Though in a CNN interview last December, Gore said if he did make a return as a candidate, it would only be as a candidate for president

But Gore isn't staying out of politics completely. The former vice president also announced Sunday he's funding a massive, bipartisan ad campaign to raise awareness on global warming. The $300 million venture, funded largely by profits from his Oscar-winning film "An Inconvenient Truth" and the cash component from his Nobel Peace Prize, will feature political rivals jointly calling for action on the climate crisis.

"Nancy Pelosi and Newt Gingrich, two people who don't agree on very much at all...are doing an ad together" Gore explained. Reverends Al Sharpton and Pat Robertson will also appear together, among others. Is Al Gore the answer?

- CNN's Alexander Mooney and Peter Lanier

soundoff (252 Responses)
  1. duuude

    How could Obama win by cheating if Florida and Michigan delegates are not seated? Obama followed the rules set down by the DNC, and so did Clinton...until she lagged behind in delegates. Since then, she's tried to change the rules mid-stream to gain advantage. Who's the one cheating? If Florida and Michigan wanted their delegates seated, they should have listened to the DNC and not moved their primaries up.

    March 31, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  2. Pat Huntington NY

    Gore need not waste his time with something as irrelevant as the presidency. He is more relevant and useful in his campaign to stop global warming. That is a greater value to us.

    March 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  3. AJ; Montpelier

    Al Gore is a brilliant, respected man and I give him credit for staying out of this. It will work itself out eventually. This is our system at work and if someone, or a party gets bruised along the way – so be it.

    March 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  4. Liar_liar_her_pant_suit_is_on_fire

    Hey sophia nyc... America did elect him. It just didn't count! Just like the Clintons will do everything in their power to make sure that Obama's election doesn't count. It's either Bush or Clinton.... no one else allowed.

    March 31, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. cc, Chicago

    As leader of the Democratic Party, it is Howard Dean's job to broker a deal. Last I checked, Dean was still neutral.

    March 31, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  6. E. C., Houston, Texas

    Gore needs to stay completely away from this Issue. To become involved in such a conflict would be disastrous for both the Candidates and the Voters. .Voters will have decided upon the Candidate after the final Primary, IF Florida and Michigan Votes are counted. If these Votes are not counted, the debate should go to Convention and then to the Supreme Court.

    March 31, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  7. lorraine

    Like I have always known, Al Gore is someone who at least has a brain in his head, and I say good for him not wanting to be the go-between Hillary & Obama. Furthermore what in the heck is the problem some people are having with Hillary staying in the race? To me this is really petty and just saying remarks that she should remove herself is more harmful to the Democratic Party than anything else, in a ball game or hockey game – you do not have the right to call the game when you get ahead – it is played out till the clock runs out. To me the Obama people are bad sports and do not know how to play fair. This is one of the first rules in life, be fair.

    March 31, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  8. Rick

    I hope Gore says what he means. He's far more valuable to his cause out of the political arena and actually making an impact. Contrast that to how little he and Clinton actually pushed for Kyoto when they were in power. Didn't even bring this to the Senate for ratification.

    March 31, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  9. Ken, LA California

    The Clintons just want this thing for unfinished business, its nothing about Americans, The party is more important than them, why did'nt Bill campaign so much for Gore or Kerry, they were not interested in the party, they only have selfish motives.

    March 31, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  10. Mauri

    Al Gore's decision to stay as far away as possible from this smell-test gone-bad of an election was the right one. And his comments are marks of the man who had the election "stolen" from him by a man who, in his ineffectiveness, still had more experience than the one who all our present congressmen are annointing without the vote of at least 10 states. Do these elected officials REALLY understand what they are doing to the detriment of our constitution and democracy?

    I voted for Al Gore in 2000 and signed my name to the recent 'DRAFT GORE" petition posted online. I do hope he's still available to pick up the pieces and put them back together four years from now. Look what he has done for his country by lifting our prestige around the world with his environmental work. And I defy anyone to cite a negative act on his part, including a spotless record for him and his family. And now, compare these accomplishments to those of the front-runner in our present primary elections. "nuff said."

    March 31, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  11. Texas Teacher

    TEXAS - Experience? Look I've been married to a firefighter for 18 years, doesn't mean that I have the experience to fight fires!

    March 31, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  12. BobW

    I don't think that Al Gore is the answer, but I do think that the democratic nominee will be neither Clinton nor Obama. My guess is that John Edwards will be the compromise candidate.

    March 31, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  13. Hillary 08

    McCain is starting to look better and better, as the chances look for Obama

    March 31, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |

    With the opportunity to bring real power to saving the earth you would think that in his position Mr. Gore would jump at the chance to have his voice heard. There is a real threat that needs a champian who is in a position to do more then just talk about. I realize that he has invested alot of his own money to make us aware of the problem, but he could do so much more from the inside compared to sitting on the fringe and pointing.

    March 31, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  15. The Austrian

    Why would Al Gore leave his cushy position as Savior of the Environment? It's got him more money and more prestige than the presidency would, and he can deal with the issue more effectively than from the Oval Office.

    March 31, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  16. Annamica, OH

    Someone actually has the nerve to say Gore tried to steal the election from Bush? Get a life will you...what planet were you on?

    March 31, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  17. Rick Greene

    I can't believe anyone would suggest Al Gore for the Democratic nominee after all the work and money Obama and Clinton have put into the race. I would definitely defect to McCain.

    March 31, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  18. Jim

    On the other hand, CNN says "yes" to recycling day old news stories broadcast on other networks!

    That's modern journalism, folks!

    March 31, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  19. jp/michigan

    What are the Obama generation afraid of? Let the rest of the voters , have their say, let them vote. 10 more weeks, are you afraid more incriminating facts will come out about Obama , to stop people from believing in his lies.

    March 31, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  20. Dan in CO

    ""Obama / Gore would be the best ticket ever.""

    Been there, done that. Gore has already been VP, and has no interest in doing so again.

    He *might* grudgingly accept a compromise ticket with him at the top, but only if Obama were his VP. Gore would NEVER have Clinton as his VP – he knows what a miserable experience sharing executive duties with a Clinton is first hand.

    March 31, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  21. Matt, Cleveland OH

    Honestly, who listens to a man who believes in anthropocentric global warming?

    (apparently over half of this message board, which disheartens me....)

    March 31, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  22. Jen DFW

    with the democratic party being split 50/50 this just goes back to Clinton and Obama need to run together. that is the only way to keep our party together.

    March 31, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  23. Thomas, LA

    Dear God, no.

    Gore is so NOT the answer, good lord.

    March 31, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  24. Ken

    Al Gore is a very intelligent person. He is smart and he knows that America is crying for change. The type of change that can only come through 'President' Obama. Obama is leading in the polls and he is almost certainly going to be the next American President not necessarily because his presidency will be dramatically different from those of other American Presidents before him, but because unlike McCain or Hillary Clinton, Obama's election will give practical meaning to the American dream. His election as the President of the most powerful nation on Earth will inspire and give hope to everyone in the world, rich and poor, irrespective of race, religion and location. The Obama project is sweet and fresh because it inspires. It's real !!

    March 31, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |

    The Clintons did nothing to help Gore when he need their endorse-
    ment when Gore was running for President.. lay off Richardson, folks.Richardson new more than he needed to know about Hillary, and he left because he is a good man whe had the courage to leave.
    What does that say about the Hillary? Someone who knows her well.

    March 31, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
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