June 25th, 2010
11:08 AM ET
12 years ago

Questions raised about Gore accuser

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/06/25/art.gore.jpg caption ="The woman accusing Al Gore of sexual misconduct sought to sell her story for $1 million."](CNN) – Two days after Oregon authorities released a transcript of a massage therapist accusing forrmer Vice President Al Gore of "unwanted sexual contact" in connection with a 2006 encounter, questions are being raised about the accuser's motives and why media outlets did not report the story sooner.

Mark Garber, the editor of the Portland Tribune, said his paper investigated the matter for months but ultimately concluded there was not enough evidence to run the story.

"We uncovered information that created significant questions in the minds of the four editors and the investigative reporter who were involved with this story. We still are not yet in a position to publish the information that helped dissuade us from the story," Garber wrote in a post on the paper's website.

Garber also said the paper was concerned with the fact that the woman "attempted to make her cooperation contingent upon her having a degree of editorial control that we couldn't allow."

In a statement released to the media earlier this week, the Portland Police Department said the allegation involved an encounter between Gore and the licensed massage therapist at a hotel on October 24, 2006. The department concluded there was not enough evidence to bring charges against the former vice president.

But Portland police spokeswoman Mary Wheat told CNN they released their report on the alleged sex crime this week because the National Enquirer was set to publish a story on the matter.

Barry Levine, the executive editor of the National Enquirer, told Washington Post media critic and CNN contributor Howard Kurtz that the still-unidentified woman demanded the tabloid pay her $1 million for the story.

The Enquirer ultimately decided not to pay for the story because it was able to obtain the detailed police report. Levine also suggested the tabloid was troubled the woman did not make a statement to the police for more than two years after the alleged incident took place. However he ultimately published the piece because "we felt, if this was in legitimate police documents, that was a story that should be brought to the surface.

After the police report was made public, several national news organizations – including CNN – reported the story. Kurtz told CNN he's not surprised the mainstream media ran with the report even though the underlying evidence of its truthfulness appeared tenuous.

"The reason this story was fit to print – even though we don't know the woman's claims are true – is that there are police records involved," said Kurtz. "So there are plenty of reasons for mainstream journalists to be skeptical about a four year claim by a woman who declined to be interviewed by the police for at least two years. But once the Portland authorities looked into the matter and generated public records, it becomes hard to ignore such a story when a former vice president is involved."

Portland Police said Wednesday the woman came to the department in January 2009, explaining that she would like to give a statement. "The woman read from a prepared statement and detailed the events of October 24, 2006. She reported that she was repeatedly subjected to unwanted sexual touching while in his (Gore's) presence," the police department's statement Wednesday said.

Earlier this year, the woman asked investigators if she could edit her statement, indicating that she could provide detectives with more information, authorities said.

Gore's office has refused to comment on the story.

Filed under: Al Gore • Popular Posts
soundoff (74 Responses)
  1. me in NH

    for some reason, I do not believe this lady .. she just wants the Million$$

    June 25, 2010 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  2. Eric

    I'm certainly no fan of Gore, but let's give the guy the benefit of the doubt.

    While necessary for instances when true crimes happen, s3xual harassment laws frequently become the weapon of choice for unhinged emotionally-distrubed women.

    June 25, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  3. Augsbee

    Seriously, does this really surprise anyone, looking back in history of our politicians and sex scandals???? it's like being surprised a Hollywood actor was accused of sexual misconduct.

    June 25, 2010 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  4. Pam, OR

    This is crap and should not even be printed. I am not a Gore supporter but anyone can see this woman is just out to make money.
    t is a cheap shot to a mans' reputation and it stinks.

    June 25, 2010 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  5. Two Row

    Oh I bet Gores office has refused to comment on the story. I was wondering why Tipper flew the coop – evidently Al was catting around on her. Kinda handsy with the massage therapist – thats a classic.

    June 25, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  6. dAvid, CA

    I smell Karl Rove behind this.

    June 25, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  7. La Piovra

    Far better founded complaints are null prossed every day, and the complaining witnesses aren't even demanding a million dollars.

    June 25, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  8. Bedtime for Obonzo

    "[Q]uestions are being raised about the accuser's motives and why media outlets did not report the story sooner."

    That's an easy one. The mainstream media are shills for Democrats/Liberals, particularly Mr. Gore.

    June 25, 2010 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  9. DS

    Geez, is $1M the going price for making accusations against public figures? Where do I sign up for that gig?

    And I thought you actually had to have sex with one first before selling your story.

    June 25, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  10. Fair is Fair

    Meanwhile, the former VP's estranged wife Tipper Gore is unconvinced Al was the choir boy on the evening in question.

    June 25, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  11. Jann in Denver

    This person is suspect. I personally don't believe Gore had anything to do with this woman.

    June 25, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  12. ray

    this is the right wing set up. yep. the right wing will do anything to bring down decent people, the have done it and will continue doing it, watch out america,

    June 25, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  13. john tesh

    And so it begins

    June 25, 2010 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  14. geecee

    If this woman was assaulted or offended by anything the former V.P. did, she should have simply gone to the police, not tried to sell her story for $$$. She just destroys her own credibility and makes it more difficult for other women who seriously are assaulted to come forward with their incidents. The National Enquirer (though I dislike tabloids) did a good job concerning the John Edwards paternity matter and I doubt very much they would have held back on this story had it been proven viable in any way.

    June 25, 2010 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  15. Willy Brown

    Here comes the progressive smear machine protecting another dirty democrat

    June 25, 2010 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  16. snow

    As fat as owl gore has gotten, he would have to pay for his pleasure.

    June 25, 2010 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  17. ann

    You get raped or abused sexually you don't wait years to report it....These money hungry kooks should have to pay the police for their time wasted....................

    June 25, 2010 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  18. Dale

    Gore is a nut case. The media's are covering up everything the liberals are doing and throwing a smoke screen in the America peoples faces.

    Gore is a liar and thief. ALl he looks out for is himself at the expense of everyone else. What's bad is he's got plenty of company in the government.

    June 25, 2010 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  19. obama victim

    why didn't the media report it?? could it be because they are democrat lap dogs?? nah....surely not

    June 25, 2010 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  20. LaChatte

    How typical of our modern day press (let's not call it journalism)! Run with a story because a police report was made, never mind where the truth lies (pun intended). After several months of investigation, the Portland Trib couldn't find enough evidence to publish the story. One would think there would be a clue there, but apparently not. Now the story is everywhere even though there's still a lack of evidence. Whether Mr. Gore actually committed the act or not is irrelevant. Last I checked, there is still a presumption of innocence in this country– and he has not been charged with anything!

    I am so sick of the lack of professional (and a reasonable IQ score) on the part of so-called journalists in this country I could puke.

    June 25, 2010 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  21. Suzanne

    why did the media not pick it up? Because he is a Democrat and their global warming darling

    June 25, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  22. RJ1008

    I wonder who is sponsoring her work, oil industry? tea beggers (who live on welfare and rail against the government at the same time) or FIX news or all of them together. It took the lady 2 years to realize what Gore did to report the matter to police?

    June 25, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  23. Annie, Atlanta

    What is wrong with these women? Don't they realize that waiting years to tell their stories makes their stories look suspicious, whether they really are or not. This is just sad. Gore and the massage therapist both look like idiots now. If someone makes untoward sexual advances towards you, call the cops then and there, or as soon as possible. Not years later! And not after you figure out you can make some money off the story. It nullifies the story, sadly.

    June 25, 2010 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  24. Republicans is smart in the head area

    She's a gold digger and there's nothing to this story. But hooray for the news media for not letting anything stand in the way of a good lascivious tall tale. "The reason this story was fit to print – even though we don't know the woman's claims are true – is that there are police records involved," Right, and how many other "Stories" replete with "police records" do you completely ignore? Several thousand? But if you can smear a public figure – Cha-Ching! Ratings!

    June 25, 2010 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  25. Elizabeth

    This is just SO not news.

    June 25, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
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