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What if Al Gore ran as a Green?

dr sardonicus's picture

Saw this while putzing around on the internets this evening: Gore Mulling Third Party Run In '08:

Former Vice President Al Gore has again been entertaining offers to run for president. Gore has been discussing a run for a third party nomination with family and close aides.

"Al Gore has been energized by the attention he's been receiving as America's leading environmentalist," a political source close to Gore said. "He believes this might present an opportunity to become president or at least try again."

Sources close to Gore said Ralph Nader has sought to recruit the former vice president to run as the candidate for the Green Party. They said Gore has not rejected the offer and was consulting with family and friends to determine the feasibility of such a candidacy.

One is advised to take the journalism of the Moonie press with the entire carton of salt. Yet this raises an interesting topic for discussion. Gore is beloved by most of the left blogosphere and a sizable chunk of liberal activists. Were he to announce a run for the White House, it's likely that most of the netroots would follow. Yet the netroots are skeptical at best and contemptuous at worst of third-party politics. Hardly a day goes by that somebody on the nets blames Ralph Nader and the Greens for the Bush Administration and the calamities that followed. So here's the question of the hour: if Al Gore were to announce that he was running for President on the Green Party ticket, would you follow? Or would you stay with the Democrats?

(Crossposted at Watching Those We Chose.)

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leah's picture
Submitted by leah on

Nader is recruiting Gore?

What does that say about Nader's credibility? Remember, Nader in 2000 ran against Gore, not against Bush; Nader assured us there was no difference. Granted, losing the way he lost clearly had a freeing impact on Gore, who became a far more eloquent and persistent critic of the Bush administration than Nader did, despite Nader's role in making Bush's stealing of that election possible.

I don't object to valiant campaigns that express values that are currently pushed too far to the margins, and I am unsatisfied, thus far, with the lack of focus by our current crop of 2008 Democratic presidential candidates on restoring integrity to our national elections, which means squeezing the money out of them, and making sure vote counts can be verified, and on restoring constitutional democracy, but I'd rather see Gore take on this role as a Democratic candidate who refuses to go outside of the spending limits of our current matching fund version of publicly financed elections, and whose campaign would be less about winning, and more about an attempt to mainstream the issues which Gore has spoken to so well in his speeches of the last several years.

I think you are right Dr. S. about finding this one hard to believe, especially coming from this source. I suppose under certain circumstances it might almost make sense, if the Democratic candidates flame out, and the disgust with the choices offered by either of the two big parties really appears to bebgetting people to consider a vote for a third party, but I somehow doubt it will be the Greens who will be able to take advantage of that situation.

There's already the possibility of this "unity" coalition getting off the ground, and that's the splinter group that will achieve instant legitimacy from the SCLM.

My anger at Nader's performance in 2000 is less about blaming him for Gore's "loss," than it is about the fact that his candidacy did nothing to further progressive liberal values, and nothing to make the Green Party a stronger player.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

I think I have to agree with Alice, but if he does run as a candidate, probably as a Dem candidate, when exactly is he going to get started?

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

President Gingrich would really enjoy his inaugural in 2009.

Good grief, the Republicans still control vast swatches of the media (ABC scares me more than Fox - more eyeballs), and the New York Times hates Al with a passion.

I will vote for the Democrat regardless, not wanting to repeat a hideous personal mistake in 2000 by voting for (Self)Righteous Ralph.

This is just a rumor being widely circulated by the right and is highly implausible for several reasons:

1) A third-party candidate in 2000 was at least partly responsible for making the election close enough in Florida that the Reps. were able to steal it;

2) Gore knows that, were he to run as a third-party candidate, he’d likely be a spoiler (as Nader was) and throw the race to the Rep. candidate, as happened in 2000;

3) Gore is a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat;

4) If Gore could beat Hillary as a third-party candidate, why couldn’t he beat her as a Democrat?

5) Gore doesn’t buy into the Green fairy tale that there’s no difference between the Republican Party and the Democratic Party;

6) And finally, running as a third-party candidate, Gore would almost certainly lose, which I’m quite sure is a risk he’s not willing to take.

I came across this post and couldn't help but notice all of the knee-jerk reactions that occur whenever someone mentions the Green Party or Ralph Nader. As someone who despises Dick and Bush with every fiber of my being, I can understand why those are sore topics.

But the past is over, and we need to look to the future and decide the best way to repair our nation after the taint of the last 6 years. And if Gore ran as a Green we could begin that process.

Of course there will be nay-sayers who claim he couldn't possibly win as a Green, he would have to run as a Dem. But Gore has transcended the Democratic Party. After 2000, he was cut loose from the bonds of the Dems, and he could say what he thought and work for what he believes in. Democrats are not allowed to do that, at least not if they want to keep the corporate campaign donations flowing. Greens are not corrupted by those corporate donations. If Gore runs as a Green, he will prove that they are a viable party, and that you don't need to have those corporate donations to be a serious candidate. It would force the MSM to pay attention to the third party.

Could he win? Maybe. Could he spoil the race for Billary? Probably. Even if he does lose, and ends up putting Fred Thompson in office, I think it would be for the long-term. It would force Democrats to decide if they are progressives or centrists. The party has been steadily moving to the right since the 1980's, and losing members to the Green Party will make them realize that they can't be a progressive party and a centrist party at the same time.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Al Gore is a corporatized special interest wussy like the rest of the two-party dictatorship. No real Green would accept his candidacy.

MJS's picture
Submitted by MJS on

as a member of the Democratic Party he will win the election. I'm not much of a gambling man but I like the odds on this one.

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Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

if President Gore ran as a dem, ya'll would vote for him. if President Gore ran as a green (or whatever), ya'll wouldn't vote for him. uh huh.

so you're saying you vote for party and not for content of character? you're losing your majority quicker than you think, if that's your logic.

MJS's picture
Submitted by MJS on

I would vote for Gore on account of his earth tone suits. I won't vote for a GOP candidate because the admixture of Oil & Jesus makes the messiah all pimply.

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Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Gore as a Green candidate is strategically sound. The American 2-party system is deeply corrupted. Nader has known it for a long time; Gore now admits that he sees it. Gore might even win as a 3rd party candidate; so, best that he goes with a 3rd party that already has a working infrastructure in place. The very least he would do is provoke a shake-up among Republicrats that would make Perault's run look like the minor blip that it was. Gore would put the Greens on a permanent footing as a legitimate federal party.