Saturday, January 26, 2008

People are still talking about Al Gore getting into it

Are they kidding? Just trying to stir the pot? Here's Jack Cafferty, talking about the possibility of Al Gore getting into the race.

Here's my thought on Gore:

America needs an elder statesman who's above all the partisan bickering. Bill Clinton has relinquished that role by backing his wife for the Presidency. I'm not blaming Clinton; I'd actually think less of him if he wasn't. But at the same time, he cannot, for a long time in the foreseeable future (especially if his wife wins), be seen as "objective" or in any sense "above it all". Nor can, on the Republican side, former President George H.W. Bush, the father of our current President, for many of the same reasons.

Who does that leave? It leaves two Nobel Laureates: former President James Carter and former Vice President Al Gore. The presence of these two men would be much more profound in an Obama or Edwards White House than in a Clinton White House (especially given Gore's history in the previous Clinton White House). Only Carter has the standing in the Democratic party that Gore has, and Carter is 83 years old. He will be a major presence for as long as he lives, but how much longer will that be? Gore will be 60 in March. Barring accident or illness, he will likely be around for at least another generation.

Clinton has done some admirable work in his time since leaving the White House, but he has not yet stepped away from politics, and therefore does not carry the weight and credibility of a statesman. Even if his wife loses, she will still be a United States Senator, and he will still be her husband. Somebody has to assume the role that Clinton is unable to fill, and in the event that this former President is unable to fulfill those duties, it seems fitting that his Vice President step up and take them on himself.

Gore should stay far, far away from this race. If he does, he will be a much greater asset to the next President than anybody currently running could ever be to him. Anybody who thinks the next President, especially if it's the Democratic nominee, will not have Gore on speed dial hasn't been paying enough attention.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a great point. Gore would even be influential in a McCain White House. He has positioned himself as the supreme elder statesman for the next generation.