Gore: Altitude threw Obama off (no, really)
Former Vice President Al Gore on a high-stakes debate stage himself in 2000, debating then-Gov. George Bush at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.
October 4th, 2012
01:50 PM ET
10 years ago

Gore: Altitude threw Obama off (no, really)

(CNN) - Former Vice President Al Gore's analysis of President Barack Obama's debate performance Wednesday: the Mile High City may be to blame.

Pundits and a CNN poll of those who watched the debate both found GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney's showing to be stronger than Obama's, who some described as appearing tired and long-winded.

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"I'm going to say something controversial here," Gore began. "Obama arrived in Denver at 2 pm today, just a few hours before the debate started. Romney did his debate prep in Denver.

"When you go to five thousand feet, and you only have a few hours to adjust, I don't know," Gore said, as other panelists in the post-debate discussion chimed in.

The video of Gore on his television channel, Current TV, was posted online by several right-leaning websites, as well as media-watching websites.

Obama flew on Sunday from Washington, D.C. to Henderson, Nevada, where he held a rally that evening. Between Sunday and his Wednesday flight to Colorado, Obama and his debate team prepared for the big night in a hotel ballroom there.

Henderson reaches just shy of a half mile up from sea level, according to the Henderson Executive Airport's website, while Denver stretches a mile above sea level.

Obama campaign senior strategist David Axelrod defended his candidate on a Thursday conference call with reporters, saying he would leave evaluation of Obama's "performance" alone because he is no "theater critic."

"While Governor Romney had a very crisp performance, both candidates got points across," Axelrod said. "Both candidates got something out of the debate."

Romney, meanwhile, arrived in Denver Monday evening and also held a rally before hunkering down with advisers for his preparations.

Both candidates rewarded themselves with field trips between study sessions. Obama visited the Hoover Dam on Tuesday and stopped by a Nevada office for his campaign on Monday. Romney and Sen. Rob Portman, who was aiding in his debate preparations, stopped in at a Chipotle restaurant on Tuesday.

- CNN's Jessica Yellin and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Al Gore • Colorado • Nevada
soundoff (359 Responses)
  1. Getoverit

    Hilarious. If Obama had won the debate, the libs would have been repeatedly spiking the ball while they were polishing Romney's headstone. But now, because Romney won, it's "Just wait until the NEXT debate." LMFAO!

    October 4, 2012 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  2. Susan

    Obama wasn't playing football in the "Mile High City"- lol! Anyone who votes for Obama, clearly is just not educated....OR they WANT to be poor!

    October 4, 2012 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  3. Getoverit

    Maybe it was the Global Warming in Denver that threw him off...

    October 4, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. Dionysus86

    Ugh. Al Gore, please shut up.

    October 4, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  5. DENNA

    President Obama was probably tired. Unlike Robme, the president has a country to run. Romney lives off of his investments, so he can lay around all day doing nothing but thinking up clever one-liners.

    October 4, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  6. Diogenes

    So according to Gore the reason for yesterday's sorry performance is that the "Choomster" was too high???

    Well that is one pronouncement from the "Inventor of the Internet" that we can actually believe.

    October 4, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  7. jackthegeek

    What is this loser talking about??? Weather condition in North Pole ???

    October 4, 2012 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  8. ThinkAgain: Hey, networks, fact-check the debates in real-time and put it in the crawl!

    If President Obama looked a little tired last night, maybe it's because HE WORKS HIS TAIL OFF BEING PRESIDENT!

    October 4, 2012 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. BLKMANinAmerica

    I agree with Mr. Gore to a point. I thin because Romney was in Denver 2days before he had time to 'work-it-out'. My President (Obama) did seem totally outta of it, but it's all good because it might be a way to SHOW the American people (without saying so) just how much of flip flop n flop flip Romney is. One thing my President shined light on last night .... Romney is such a big LIER to be a man of 'god'.

    October 4, 2012 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  10. ThinkAgain: Hey, networks, fact-check the debates in real-time and put it in the crawl!

    Anyone else notice that Mittens' Latino tan was completely gone last night? Who tans and fades as fast as he does? (Hint: Folks who suck up to minorities ...)

    October 4, 2012 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  11. Jim

    Well, we all know Gore's an idiot - here's more proof. The President, more than any other person on earth could control how he travelled for this debate. If his preparation was a factor then that just points to poor decision making.

    October 4, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  12. Ravito

    Everyone (including NBC, MSNBC, PBS, etc.) have blown smoke up Obama's a&% for so long that he had no idea how to handle genuine criticism. Obama is a different guy without his teleprompter. Setting him up? Really? Most thought if Obama won the debate the race was over. Many concede it is now a horse race. If that really was Obama's strategy, then he's even dumber than he looked last night. I'm certain he and his staff can't wait to see what Joe will say during his debate with Ryan next week. Should be a blast.

    October 4, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. jackthegeek

    ExRepublican, you are just pure moron. Immigration was not even an issue on last nights debate. LOL You are a loser like Obama too. You can bring 47% into the topic, but it won't matter at all.

    October 4, 2012 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  14. Mammy

    My god, demoncrats are stupid!

    October 4, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  15. Teatroll

    LOL, why does anyone report on what Al Gore has to say anymore ?.

    October 4, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  16. Gore is a quak

    This is SO laughable! Excuses, excuses, excuses.

    October 4, 2012 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  17. starman

    I think Obama was totally thrown of by how well Romney basically completely and utterly lied about 80% of the things that came out of his mouth. 3 Times Romney pronounced loudly that he wasn’t cutting 5 trillion in tax's and the fact checkers have cried foul. That among many many other things such as his insistence that he is for the middle class. Really? Only the republi-bots think that. These people have a solid track record of thousands of decision over the past 12 years benefiting corporations first and they want us to buy now based of words from his mouth that they stand for us? It’s a terrible state of this country when 70% of people say Romney won that debate when 80% of the things he said were bold face lies.

    October 4, 2012 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  18. Dakota Burt

    The golf course in Las Vegas is considered high desert, that is close to 5,000 feet above sea level. Please, Denver, the Mile High City is also around the same height above sea level. Maybe the Las Vegas sun, while playing Golf, affected his rational thinking or maybe he just doesn't have anymore Hope and Change left to go on. The President acted ashamed and he should be ashamed with so many of us out of work, for the hopeless change of the last 4-years! Thank you very little Mr. Pres.

    October 4, 2012 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  19. Rick in L.A.

    What matters is only a handful of people use these debates to decide who to vote for. The rest of us know what really counts: President Obama will win in November and Mr. Romney (not a bad person) will go back to venture capital.
    But PLEASE, vote.

    October 4, 2012 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  20. Will

    Appearing on the View, meeting with Jay-Z & Beyonce, playing golf, running from intelligence briefings, and being malnourished from eating Michelle's low calorie lunches makes Mr. President a very tired and long winded person.

    October 4, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  21. Berrybornovertherry

    Obama should propose a new government agency to help amateur politicians do better in debates. Isn't that his solution to everything?

    October 4, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  22. m123


    October 4, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  23. jumphigh

    That's right...Romney didn't have to breathe the same air Oblahblah did on Wednesday night. The big wind you heard was the sound of Oblablah sucking a huge amount of air due to his poor performance.

    October 4, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  24. km4candles

    Fancy, tell me one area that you are better off than you were 4 years ago, please.

    October 4, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  25. TSB8C

    Romney blew Obama away with facts that Obama can't defend:

    1. Middle class earnings down
    2. Health insurance premiums up
    3. Failed promises
    4. Much higher debt
    5. etc, etc, etc.

    October 4, 2012 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
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