Gore: Obama has 'failed'
June 22nd, 2011
04:40 PM ET
11 years ago

Gore: Obama has 'failed'

(CNN) - Former vice president and environmental advocate Al Gore sharply criticized President Obama's "failed" approach to global warming Wednesday, forcing the White House to defend its record on climate change.

Gore was supportive of Obama's action in the first six months of his administration, but the former Democratic presidential nominee said the administration has not made the case for action among the American people.

"President Obama has thus far failed to use the bully pulpit to make the case for bold action on climate change," Gore wrote in a "Rolling Stone" article published online. "After successfully passing his green stimulus package, he did nothing to defend it when Congress decimated its funding."

"Without presidential leadership that focuses intensely on making the public aware of the reality we face, nothing will change," Gore added.

But in a written response to Gore’s essay Wednesday White House official Clark Stevens outlined a number of policies the administration implemented in the last two years, including investments in clean energy through the Recovery Act that set “aggressive new joint fuel economy and emissions standards for cars and trucks,” reducing greenhouse gas emissions by "960 metric tons."

“The President has been clear since day one that climate change poses a threat domestically and globally, and under his leadership we have taken the most aggressive steps in our country’s history to tackle this challenge,” Stevens said.

Since losing the 2000 presidential election, Gore has championed global warming and advocated for a transition to clean energy. He won the Nobel Prize for his environmental efforts in 2007.

Obama, he said, has not defended the science of global warming or provided a "presidential venue" to bring the data before the public.

Although he acknowledged the political difficulty in taking a stand on the issue, Gore said the president has facts to back up his opinions.

"Assuming that the Republicans come to their sense and avoid nominating a clown, his re-election is likely to involve a hard-fought battle with high stakes for the country," Gore wrote. "But in this case, the president has reality on his side."

Updated 4:44 p.m.

Filed under: Al Gore • President Obama
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Fair is Fair

    Shut up, Gore... your devotion to that pseudo-religion make you look more rediculous every day. But hey... anything to make a buck, huh Al?

    June 22, 2011 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Ohio Man

    Hey Gore.. why not ask Obama to make it rain over the Arizona fires why u at it... The want this man to do everything, then when he does everything they say he doing to much and shouldnt be concerned with this or that.. .Gezzzzzz .. but then again nobody else seems to working in Washington but Obama... as the Repubs and others have been on a paid vacation for almost 3yrs now...

    June 22, 2011 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  3. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    It's a shame, Mr. Vice President, that you didn't sound-off this way while the Bush Crew was stealing the election in 2000 – you could have prevented everything that happened after that, you know!!! To quote George Harrison......."Isn't it a pity, isn't it a shame......?"

    June 22, 2011 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  4. Laverne

    Amazing how Obama is held to a miracle worker status on so many issues when others have failed including Gore himself on so many levels! President Obama has had to deal with crisis after crisis ever since he took office and i am sorry Mr. Gore we have had more pressing issues to deal with even though you would like Obama to work this miracle alone, it takes more than just him. I suppose you will be supporting perhaps Jon Huntsman this time around and guess what he and the rest of his republican buddies won't even give a second look at global warming just like they have always done which is absolutely NOTHING!

    June 22, 2011 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  5. Kwesoe

    Al, the President has not failed on this issue. When you have a country whose economy is up in smoke and millions are unemployed, you need to set priorities. Right now, Job creation is the priority. It takes a satisfied employed society to think about issues like the environment. Just keep doing your fair share of promoting the environment.

    June 22, 2011 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  6. ConservaFASCISTS

    Blame Congress Mr. Gore, not the President. It's republicans who are debunking climate change and stripping of any funding. It's hard to convince people of climate change when they don't believe in science or evolution.

    June 22, 2011 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  7. thomas

    Thanks Al , you have failed , we all have failed !

    At least we didn't have joe Lieberman as VP !

    June 22, 2011 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  8. king

    Gore dont realize how powerful these corporations are. theyve got their attack dogs repugs who defend them on every turn by simply repeating lies over and over and over again, The dems in congresss are either in the corporates pockets also or they are just some of the most sorriest people ever in congress, they allow the repugs to say and do any thing and get away with it. the only one that had some cohanos was weiner and he's gone. the next problem are the american people who are some of the most gullable and pesimistic people ive seen in a while. the repugs do anything and say any thing and
    and get away with it. the desparency among the rich and the poor are austronomical and getting worst only two country in the world can compete with our desproportionate wages. yet the repugs keep giving them more tax breaks on the backs of the middle classs elderly and poor. Gore got to understand that these rich people owns all the media outlet, and with obama for the middle class and the unfortunates. standing up to such power is a waste.

    June 22, 2011 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  9. Bill from GA

    While Gore may have a point, he is much to blame for the bush years, with the weak campaign he (Gore) ran in 2000, with made-up stories that damaged his credibility, and little fight at the end when w's bunch stole the election.

    You let America down, Al, and then got rich(er) off the environmental situation.

    June 22, 2011 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  10. Thoughtman

    I am a supporter of the President, yet I agree that he has not used the bully pulpit enough to explain to the public the science and danger of climate change, nor has he used it enough to inspire us to a higher cause. Maybe the times we live in create so much noise that it is hard to get our attention. Coming in with two wars, and a near depression economic crisis is enough to challenge one person's focus. I still believe he is the best person for this moment in our history.

    June 22, 2011 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  11. A Kickin' Donkey

    Al –

    You've got a bunch of money and a lot of free time. Maybe you should show some leadership and take on this cause celebrie.

    The President has been a little busy preventing a meltdown of the economy, popping bin Laden, forcing $20B out of BP to clean up the Gulf, passing Healthcare and Financial Reform, preventing a global pandemic of the H1N1 (swine flu), saving the US auto industry and keeping jobs stateside, all the while swimming against a GOP tide of obstructionism that began in February 2009 [just a couple of weeks after he took office].

    Mr. Gore, you needed to win in 2000. You didn't. Not even sure if you won your home state of Tennessee. All you had to do was get Ralph Nader out of the race and you'd have won. All you needed to do was to fight George Bush in the Supreme Court and won. I support your environmental focus but you could have shown some leadership yourself that would have fixed a lot of pain that this country has endured

    June 22, 2011 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  12. Lou

    I guess he is not making enough free money off of all the green energy deals he has put his placard on. He reminds me of the guys you see on the infomercials on TV selling the latest sham wow. He is right about one thing though and that is Obama has killed our economy and his policies on fossil fuels have driven the prices through the roof. But since I am in the oil business I am not complaining as I am making more money than I ever have but find no solace in it at the sake of the US economy.

    June 22, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  13. Arin

    I agree Obama hasn't done enough re: environment. I also believe (hope) that if he gets re-elected he will begin to more aggressively use the bully pulpit. He has to play a smart game with Nov 2012 around the corner, and then if he wins, its all gravy.

    And btw, love Gore's "clown" comment. I laughed out loud. Why did ya have to blow your own home state buddy? Why!!!!!?

    June 22, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  14. whywouldanyonevotered?

    The only scientist to dispute mans effect on global warming are pollitically driven, such as John Coleman here in San Diego (works for KUSI, a McKinnon media outlet...part of Newts' Contract America misinformation agenda) and the Marshall Foundation, which are paid scientists by the same corps that back the red machine....and who also cut their teeth by insisting that ciggarette smoking was practically harmless until the major lawsuits uncovered the known facts...they then shifted their eggheads, by way of paycheck from major energy, to battle the global warming science. Get real people- if you toss yer trash in the yard then you will have a trashy yard. I support our president but I do feel he needs to stand solid on all fronts as I believe we, as Americans, are seriously in jeapordy if we allow another Red administration to do as they always do and raid our economy and rape the enviornment for their lobbys gain. Enough already people, learn, read, don't just listen to what you want to hear. Vote on facts!

    June 22, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  15. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    In all fairness, Obama has been dealing with other things as well. I would have hoped that the skeptics would be willing to look at the information. I would hope that the deniers like the senator from OK would shut up and stop being the mouth peice for the industries that pollute. If he had won the election, would things be different? Maybe they would, and we would have some carbon tax or cap-and-trade system in place. We need consistent influence over the members of the House and Senate. That is what Al Gore can organize - a group that consistantly talks to the public and to the Congress.

    June 22, 2011 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  16. XWngLady

    BREAKING NEWS: President Obama has FAILED! He has failed to do EVERYTHING. He has failed to be the end all be all for every single interest group in this country. He has failed to find every single person a job, make every company hire more people or make the banks give people loans. He has failed to erase every person's personal debt, pay off their mortgage for them, reverse global warming or bring about WORLD PEACE!....President Obama, why haven't you been able to cure every ill and solve every single problem that this country faces in 2 1/2 years? ((sarcasm))

    June 22, 2011 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  17. Bill from GA

    Our President's 'bully pulpit' is drowned out by the right-wing propaganda network (fox 'news' network).

    June 22, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  18. Wes B.

    I suspect Climate Change is an issue Obama is more likely to work on in his second term. I'm not saying it isn't as important, but as far as the public is concerned, war/economy/jobs/healthcare/immigration are all things that probably show up higher on the list.

    June 22, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  19. Sam

    lmao! This from someone that couldn't even get himself a shoe in win please.

    June 22, 2011 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  20. Ernie

    I don't think that "Big AL" is going to give Obama a big endorsement that he needs from the former "Vice President". "Big AL" said he has failed. "Big AL" just noticed this now!!!!. I think "Big AL" has been watching the weather channel to long.

    June 22, 2011 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  21. Tony the Traveler., Anywhere, USA

    Misleading article title. But it got me to look closer, ...so I guess it is effective. The only failures are those who haven't accepted reality in that Obama is our President, and that climate change is really occurring. The President shouldn't have to help you out with that. I do thank Mr. Gore for his enlightenment on climate change.

    June 22, 2011 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  22. Brett

    This man is full of himself. Global Warming is a hoax. It is intended for people like this idiot to make more money.

    June 22, 2011 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  23. Bill from GA

    The whole idea of using science or facts to get something done in Congress is absurd. mitch mcconnel and bohner still deny that the stimulus worked, even though our Country was loosing over 750,00 jobs a month and GDP was MINUS 6.2% at the time President Obama took office.

    June 22, 2011 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  24. gt

    al must be out of money or wants head lines again... please just go away....

    June 22, 2011 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  25. Bill from GA

    Hey, Shallow Al, looks like (from the opinions posted) attacking our President isn't helping YOUR rep much.

    June 22, 2011 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
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