An Obama-Gore co-presidency?
There's an interesting piece over at the nytimes web site:
This article points out that the lineups for the Democratic Convention in Denver are now pretty much set and the top speakers have been announced. We know on which nights the party's biggest stars will be speaking. With one glaring exception. Nobody has said a word about Al Gore. Nobody has said a word about his role in Denver. You would think Gore would obviously be going to Denver and they'd be insane not to have him up at the podium in prime time.
So we don't know who Obama's vp will be and we haven't heard a thing about Gore's role. This article speculates that maybe Gore will be vice president. When you think about it, it makes a hell of a lot of sense. The GOP is going to try to convince the american people that they don't really know Obama. They will play off the fact that most americans had never heard of Obama until four years ago. Trust what you know, not what you don't know. For this reason the Obama people would be taking a huge risk to put another relatively unknown person on the ticket. The GOP will also rip Obama endlessly on his relative lack of experience compared to McCain.
The answer to both of those lines of attack is to put someone with unquestionable character and experience, someone the public knows very well and trusts on the ticket. Someone whose presence on the ticket would only underscore the historic nature of the campaign. With respect to all the other people on the vp list, Al Gore is the obvious answer.
There are no term limits for vice president. Gore can be vice president again. I am speculating that Gore is being pressured to do this because his presence would instantly lend unquestioned integrity and weight to the ticket. It would insulate Obama from the obvious GOP lines of attack. Anyone who wonders if they really know Obama will immediately not worry becuase they do know Gore, he's been there.
Gore is passionate about the immediate and urgent need to take drastic action on environmental and energy issues. There is only so much you can do from the outside. So what if Obama says to Gore that he can come back to the vice president's office and have complete control over environmental and energy issues. In effect a co-presidency. This would be Gore's chance to enact the policies and changes he badly wants, and to do something remarkable for the country because his presence on the ticket could conceivably guarantee Obama's election as President.
Not to mention that by putting the other half of Clinton/Gore on the ticket, Obama would instantly satisfy both the Hillary Clinton supporters in the party *and* the supporters on the left who have started to complain that he isn't liberal enough. It would also speak well for Obama, who can then say that in all honesty he has chosen the most qualified person there is to share the White House with him and to take over the Oval Office if anything should ever happen to him.
Obama/Gore. Barack and Al in '08. It works if you ask me. An audacious candidate who aspires to an audacious presidency should show the willingness to make an audacious choice for runningmate. Speak loudly. Speak boldly.
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