Al Gore in 2008?
In the neverending search for a plausible alternative to Hillary Clinton as the 2008 Democratic nominee, the latest alternative is none other than erswhile Saturday Night Live comic Al Gore.
Andrew Sullivan quotes both an emailer and a “canny Republican” from a party the other night as saying Gore would be perfect.
If that’s not enough, Susan Estrich dubs him “The Man Who Could Stop Hillary.”
Gore deprives Hillary of administration bragging rights. He’s got the same ones, without the baggage. And then he’s got the right position on the war, and the superstar record on the environment to boot.
Add to that some liberal Hollywood money, and he gives her a run for hers.
The problem is: then what? No one fits Hugh Hewitt’s stereotype of the losing angry Democrat better than Al Gore. The place to win elections in this country is not the left but the middle. You want to lose for sure, run to Hillary’s left.
Of course, the Democrats would presumably like to win in 2008. So, a guy who would “lose for sure” would seem to have some drawbacks.
Richard Nixon was the last major party candidate to lose a presidential race (1960) and then come back to not only get the nomination again (1968) but actually win. Adlai Stevenson was the last Democrat to get a second shot (1956) after having lost (1952). It strikes me as incredibly unlikely, therefore, that either Al Gore or John Kerry will ever get another chance.
Further, while Gore actually won the popular vote in 2000 and came just a few hundred correctly cast ballots away in Florida from winning the whole thing, he seems to have permanently cast off the centrist mantle that he wore as a Southern Democrat. A whole series of speeches, which will be played over and over in clips that will make Howard Dean’s scream seem restrained, moved him to the Angry Left camp. That will excite the Netroots and give him a chance against Hillary in the primaries. It will absolutely destroy him in November.