Democratic Field Leaves Some Still Wanting Gore
Al Gore has said "no" for months now, but that didn't stop the folks over at draftgore.com from spending $64,575 for a full page ad urging him to run for president this year.
"You say you have fallen out of love with politics, and you have every reason to feel that way," the ad, in the New York Times, said. "But we know you have not fallen out of love with your country. And your country needs you now -- as do your party and the planet you are fighting so hard to save."
Gore has given no firm indication that he plans to run for president this year, preferring to bask in the accolades for his environmental movie and his crusade against global warming. He will find out on Friday whether he wins the Nobel peace prize for that effort.
A top aide told the Associated Press today that "He's making no plans, and we're doing nothing." But Roy Neel teased supporters, adding that "He's not ruled it out in the future."
A second presidential campaign for Gore seems less likely as front-runner Hillary Clinton solidifies her position at the top of the Democratic pack. The latest Washington Post/ABC poll showed her with a 33-point lead over Sen. Barack Obama nationally.
Gore's reputation has improved steadily since his narrow loss to George W. Bush in 2000. Now, he is treated like a rock star among some Democratic faithful who would like to see him in the office they believe he already won.
The draftgore site, which claims thousands of donors who helped finance the purchase of the Times ad, describes Gore almost as a deity.
"He's eloquent, passionate, relentless, undaunted," the site says. "Al Gore is also the lead champion in the fight against global warming, a passionate defender of our Constitution and an unyielding voice against the Bush Administration's abuse of power."
This summer, the group delivered more than 100,000 signatures on a petition to Gore's Nashville office. Whether that fawning adoration will work on Gore is unclear, however.
There's already one former Tennessee senator in the race for the presidency: Fred Thompson joined the Republican nomination battle after a successful effort to draft him that started last spring.
--Michael D. Shear
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