Al Gore on Principles & Values

Laying groundwork for possible comeback

People close to Gore say he is not likely to reenter the public arena in earnest until this fall, and, in his deliberate manner, is still pondering “how he wants to emerge.” But as Democrats debate his political future, the candidate appears to be at least laying the groundwork for a comeback. He has been talking to supporters about establishing a policy institute in Tennessee, perhaps connected to Vanderbilt University, as well as a political action committee.

Gore believes he would have won the presidency if the US Supreme Court had allowed the Florida recount to be completed. But they say his victory in the popular vote has softened the blow, making his feelings of rejection less painful than they otherwise might be. Gore’s associates say there is plenty of time for him to decide whether to make another go at the White House. Many of Gore’s friends and advisers say that if they had to bet, they would put their money on another Gore presidential run.

Source: Susan Baer, Baltimore Sun Jun 24, 2001

Take your souls to the polls

I feel it coming. I feel a message from this gathering that on Tuesday we’re going to carry Tennessee, and Memphis is going to lead the way. I feel it coming. I believe that on Tuesday morning, very early, before the sun rises, in congregations all across Memphis, you’re going to be saying, ‘Wake up, it’s time to take your souls to the polls!’
Source: Speech in Tennessee Nov 4, 2000

Bush’s record indicates he’s not ready to lead America

As governor, George W. Bush gave big oil a tax break while opposing health care for 220,000 kids. Texas now ranks 50th in family health care. He’s left the minimum wage at $3.35 an hour, let polluters police themselves. Today, Texas ranks last in air quality. Now Bush promises the same $1 trillion from Social Security to two different groups. He squanders the surplus on a tax cut for those making over $300,000. Is he ready to lead America?
Source: TV advertisement by Gore campaign Nov 2, 2000

Presidency not about popularity nor getting along

Gov. Bush often says you should support him because he’d get along with people in Washington, and that’s all well and good and we certainly need less partisanship. But the real question is, Who does he want to get along with? The special interests who want to see more massive tax giveaways to the wealthiest? The powerful interests who always come out ahead and block our greatest chance to make this prosperity work for you? Getting along is one thing. But sometimes a president has to be willing to
Source: Link Nov 2, 2000

I have kept the faith, with family & in office

Q: Will you keep all these promises when you’re in office?

GORE: I believe that a lot of people are skeptical about people in politics today because we have seen a time of great challenge for our country. I’d like to tell you something about me. I keep my word. I have kept the faith.

I’ve kept the faith with my country. I volunteered for the Army. I served in Vietnam. I kept the faith with my family. Tipper and I have been married for 30 years. We have devoted ourselves to our children. I have kept the faith with our country. Nine times I have raised my hand to take an oath to the Constitution, and I have never violated that oath.

I have not spent the last quarter century in pursuit of personal wealth. I have spent the last quarter century fighting for middle-class, working men and women. I am asking for your support and your vote, and, yes, your confidence, and your willingness to believe that we can do the right thing in America and be the better for it.

Source: St. Louis debate Oct 17, 2000

His experience in Vietnam & Congress qualifies him to lead

Q: How would you lead during the mid-east crisis?

BUSH: It requires a clear vision, willingness to stand by our friends, and the credibility for people, both friend and foe, to understand when America says something, we mean it.

GORE: I see a future when the world is at peace, with the United States of America promoting the values of democracy and human rights and freedom around the world. What can I bring to that challenge? I volunteered and went to Vietnam. In the House of Representatives, I served on the House Intelligence Committee. When I went to the United States Senate, I asked for an assignment to the Armed Services Committee. I was one of only 10 Democrats, along with Senator Joe Lieberman, to support Governor Bush’s dad in the Persian Gulf War resolution. And for the last eight years, I’ve served on the National Security Council.

Source: (X-ref Bush) St. Louis debate Oct 17, 2000

Campaign finance reform will help end cynicism in politics

Q: How will you engage youth in politics?

GORE: Sometimes people who have great dreams, as young people do, are apt to stay at arm’s length from the political process because they think if they invest their hopes, they’re going to be disappointed. But thank goodness we’ve always had enough people who have been willing to push past the fear of a broken heart and become deeply involved in forming a more perfect union. We’ve got to address one of the biggest threats to our democracy: the current campaign financing system. I will make the McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform bill the very first measure that I send to the Congress as president.

BUSH: A lot of people are tired of the bitterness in Washington. There are a lot of young folks saying, you know, “Why do I want to be involved with this mess?” And what I think needs to happen is to set aside the partisan differences and set an agenda that will make sense. I don’t think it’s the issues that turn kids off. I think it’s the tone.

Source: St. Louis debate Oct 17, 2000

Promises to get the big things right; sorry for exaggerating

Q: Do you think the voters should question the Vice President’s credibility?

BUSH: It’s important for the president to be credible with Congress and foreign nations. It’s something people need to consider. I’m going to defend my record against exaggerations. Exaggerations like only 5% of seniors receive benefits under my Medicare package. That’s what he said the other day. That’s simply not the case.

GORE: I got some of the details wrong last week. I’m sorry about that. One of the reasons I regret it is that getting a detail wrong interfered with my point. However many days that young girl in Florida stood in her classroom doesn’t change the fact that there are a lot of overcrowded classrooms in America and we need to do something about that. I can’t promise that I will never get another detail wrong. But I will promise you that I will work my heart out to get the big things right for the American people.

Q: Does that resolve the issue?

BUSH: That’s going to be up to the people.

Source: (X-ref Bush) Presidential Debate at Wake Forest Oct 11, 2000

Judge me on my experience and platform

Q: Is character important in this race?

GORE: [Bush] may want to focus on scandals; I want to focus on results. I stand here as my own man, and I want you to see me for who I really am. I may not be the most exciting politician, but I will work hard for you every day, I will fight for middle class families and working men and women, and I will never let you down. I think the American people should take into account who we are as individuals, what our experience is, and what our proposals are.

Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA Oct 3, 2000

Gore’s favorite things: Wheaties, Beatles, & kissing Tipper

On the Oprah Winfrey show, viewers learned that Gore’s favorite book is “The Red and the Black” by 19th century French novelist Robert Stendahl; that his favorite movie is the quirky 1983 Scottish film “Local Hero,” and that his favorite cereal is Wheaties. His favorite indulgence, he said, is water-skiing with his family on a Tennessee lake.

Winfrey asked Gore about the sloppy kiss he planted on his wife at the Democratic Convention. Gore explained that “this is a partnership and she is my soulmate.“

Winfrey had fun playing a game of ”favorite things“ with Gore. Favorite subject in school? ”Science,“ he responded. Favorite teacher: ”Dean Stambaugh, who was my art teacher.“ Favorite quote: ”Bob Dylan: those who are not busy being born are busy dying.“ Favorite time of year: ”Springtime.“ Favorite thing to sleep in: ”A bed.“ All-time favorite musical group: ”Beatles.“ Favorite meal: ”Chinese.“ Favorite childhood memory: ”Playing baseball with my dad.“

Source: Kevin Sack, NY Times Sep 12, 2000

Make history with fewer than 1 in 10 living in poverty

Source: 191-page economic plan, “Prosperity for American Families” Sep 6, 2000

Agrees to further debates if Bush agrees to 3 main debates

Gore’s condition for attending any [non-network or third-party] debates is that Bush first agree to attend the three commission debates. Gore said, “What’s needed is to respect the right of the American people to see these debates on all networks in prime time, the way it’s been done since 1988. It’s not fair to the American people to try to sharply reduce the number of people who can see the debates and reduce the amount of time for the debates.”
Source: Michael Finnegan, Ronald Brownstein, LA Times Sep 4, 2000

Focus on “specifics” questions Bush & favors wonkishness

“If you don’t want specifics,” Gore told the crowd, “now is the time to leave.” Gore critiqued Bush’s Social Security proposal, asking, “Where are the specifics? Where does the money come from? I’ll give you the specifics before the election because I’m not afraid for you to know the facts of what Joe Lieberman and I are proposing,” he said. Doing so is “a way to respect and honor our democracy.”

Gore’s obsession with specifics, and his nonstop promotion of his obsession, serves a dual purpose. At one level, he is trying to draw substantive distinctions between his policy proposals and Bush’s. But at a somewhat more subliminal level, Gore’s focus is intended to reinforce questions about Bush’s intellectual heft, while technically sticking to his pledge not to wage personal attacks against Bush. It is terrain where Gore clearly feels he holds an advantage, and it reflects his campaign’s effort to turn a perceived liability-the candidate’s wonkishness-into an asset.

Source: Kevin Sack, NY Times, p. A18 Aug 22, 2000

Populist tone to commitment to fight for the people

In a fiery speech he delivered here on the banks of the Mississippi River, Mr. Gore placed Mr. Bush squarely on the side of pharmaceutical companies that he said gouge the elderly with high drug prices, insurance company “bean counters” who overrule doctors and major polluters who cut corners on environmental protection measures for the sake of profits. “They’re for the powerful, we’re for the people,” Mr. Gore said.
Source: David Barstow, NY Times Aug 20, 2000

Running on his agenda of last quarter century

Al Gore said “I’m running on my own agenda, on my own voice and through my own experiences. The reason I’m going to take the risk of going into specifics is that I think people ought to know the issues that are at stake. Pres. Clinton gave us a foundation upon which I will build, upon which I will make a new start to include those who have not yet fully enjoyed the benefits of the progress we have made. I want them to know that the proposals I’m making for the future are rooted in my 24-year fight for working families. I want them to know that my proposal for regular open meetings as president is rooted in my experience in learning from the working families for whom I fought for 16 years in the House and Senate. I want them to know that my passion for protecting the environment is rooted in the battle that I’ve waged for almost a quarter century.“
Source: Richard L. Berke, NY Times Aug 13, 2000

Challenges Bush to debate issues instead of personal attacks

Gore pledged to avoid negative attacks against Bush for the duration of the campaign. Gore said he would rather debate Bush and Cheney “on the issues” instead of engaging in personal attacks. “I will not say a single unkind word about Gov. Bush or Dick Cheney. We want to elevate this campaign. We want to invite [Bush and Cheney] to debate the issues. We want to invite them to town hall meetings kind of like this one to talk to the people.”
Source: Ian Christopher McCaleb for Aug 9, 2000

Criticism with defense of Clinton served the public interest

Q: Comment on your defense of President Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
A: I was critical of the President. I also defended the office of the presidency against. a thoroughly disproportionate penalty for a serious and reprehensible personal mistake. He should not have been removed from office for that offense. In fighting against [Congressional] efforts to remove him from office and undo the act of the American people in twice electing him, I think I was serving the public interest well.
Source: Democratic Debate in Durham, NH Jan 5, 2000

Policies, not labels, define me

Q: Who are you, Mr. Gore?
A: I support the elimination of this don’t ask-don’t tell policy. I helped to pass the toughest new gun control measures in a generation. I believe that we ought to have total license ID’s for the purchase of new handguns. I think we ought to ban assault weapons and Saturday night specials and junk guns. I also am committed to the principle of high quality affordable health care for all. And I don’t really care what kind of label people apply to those positions and views.
Source: Democratic Debate in Durham, NH Jan 5, 2000

Working to improve things overcomes disillusionment

Q: My students feel cynicism towards public service, the idea that politics is a dirty word. A: I know how they feel. When I came back from Vietnam, I was as disillusioned as anybody you’ve ever met. I thought politics would be the absolute last thing I ever did with my life. But as a journalist covering city hall, I saw how people rolled up their sleeves and tried to make things better. And I would like to work hard as president to communicate that spirit to young people.
Source: Democrat Debate at Dartmouth College Oct 28, 1999

Practical Idealism: centrist on most issues

Gore’s motto is “practical idealism,” and he is, broadly speaking, a centrist. Some important distinctions are that Gore is a meddler [in dealing with government reform]; Gore hedges his enthusiasm for free trade with conditions; and Gore has kept his powder dry on pledges against raising taxes. Gore is inclined to keep Medicare and Social Security solvent by spending budget surpluses on them.
Source: The Economist, p. 13 Jul 3, 1999

America’s mission: prove that freedom & diversity work

Our mission has always been to prove that religious, political, and economic liberty are the natural birthright of all men and women, and that freedom unlocks a higher fraction of the human potential than any other way of organizing human society. America has a [second] mission to prove to the world that people of different racial and ethnic backgrounds, of all faiths and creeds, can not only work and live together, but can enrich and ennoble both themselves and our common purpose.
Source: Speech on 50th Anniversary of NATO, Ellis Island, NY Apr 21, 1999

Al Gore on Campaign Themes

Thanks for allowing Clinton and me to bring change

Al Gore resurrected the name of Bill Clinton today as he declared to blacks and union members here that Tuesday’s election was about not only material prosperity, but also “prosperity of the spirit.” Gore said, “Thank you for allowing Bill Clinton and me to bring change.” Gore credited the “change” wrought during the Clinton administration to the strong economy, adding that “progressive policies are more easily pursued when we have a sound economy.”

Gore recalled the debt and high unemployment of earlier years and said: “Now, because you gave Bill Clinton and me a chance to change our economic policy, instead of the biggest deficits, we’ve got the biggest surpluses. Instead of repeat recessions, we’ve tripled the market.” From the pulpits, Gore said material prosperity was not enough. “The most important form of prosperity we need to focus on is the prosperity of the spirit,” Gore said at a church in Philadelphia.

Source: Katharine Seelye and Kevin Sack, NY Times Nov 6, 2000

Top Ten rejected campaign slogans

    The “Top 10” rejected Gore-Lieberman campaign slogans, as presented by Al Gore on “The Late Show with David Letterman” on Thursday:
  1. Vote for me or I’ll come to your home and explain my 191-page economic plan to you in excruciating detail.
  2. Remember America, I gave you the Internet and I can take it away. Think about it.
  3. Your vote automatically enters you in a drawing for the $123 billion surplus.
  4. With Lieberman on the ticket, you get all kinds of fun new days off. Vote for us, we’re going to work 24/6.
  5. We know when the microphone is on.
  6. Vote for me and I will take whatever steps are necessary to outlaw the term, “Whazzzup.”
  7. Gore-Lieberman: You don’t have to worry about pork-barrel politics.
  8. You’ll thank us in four years when the escalator to the moon is finished.
  9. If I can handle Letterman, I can handle Saddam Hussein.
  10. I’ll be twice as cool as that president guy in the “West Wing.”
Source: David Letterman Show Sep 14, 2000

Stand for the people and against special interests

Will we stand up for the people? Or will we allow entrenched interests to take over the Presidency as well as the Congress? I’ve stood up to the big drug companies, the big oil companies, the insurance companies and the HMO’s. We’ve shown that we can put progress ahead of partisanship, to make gains that were once unimaginable: the first budget surpluses in a generation. Twenty-two million new jobs. Targeted tax cuts to pay for college and job training. The welfare rolls cut in half. Now, we can set our sights even higher. Imagine an America where no parent or grandparent ever has to choose between medicine and food and rent; where we honor the bonds between the generations, and keep Social Security and Medicare strong. Imagine an America that transforms education -- so that there is a qualified teacher in every classroom. Imagine an America where we cure cancer, ease the pain of disease, and let all our children breathe air free of pollution.
Source: Speech in Connecticut on special interests Jul 10, 2000

Whose side are you on? The people’s or the powerful?

Gore used a version of an old union organizing slogan about choosing sides: “The fundamental choice has to do with whose side are you on. I want to fight for the people; the other side fights for the powerful,” Gore said. “That’s why the big pharmaceutical companies are supporting Governor Bush. That’s why the big oil companies are supporting Governor Bush. That’s why the big polluters are supporting Governor Bush. That’s why the HMO’s and insurance companies are supporting Governor Bush.”
Source: Alison Mitchell, New York Times, p. A12 Jul 7, 2000

Earth in the Balance is a call to action and hope

This book is a call to action and hope. Whether our purpose is to preserve the simple pleasure of fishing in a mountain stream on an autumn morning, or the simple security of knowing that our children’s drinking water is safe, we have it in our power to restore the earth’s balance before the growing imbalance inflicts its greatest potential damage on our children and grandchildren. Today the human species is the only one with the self-knowledge and the capacity to protect its own future.
Source: New foreword to Earth in the Balance, p. xii Apr 23, 2000

In Congress, called himself a “raging moderate”

Gore worked assiduously to avoid the left-wing labeling that had hastened the end of his father’s career. He dubbed himself a “raging moderate,” a term he thought captured his carefully confined activism. Although widely viewed by voters as a moderate, his overall record leaned to the liberal side sometimes-especially in domestic affairs. He was a reliable liberal vote on economics, taxation, and labor matters, and some of his legislative impulses resonate today as classic “big government.”
Source: Inventing Al Gore, p.132 Mar 3, 2000

Domestic priorities: schools, health, enviro, & Reinvention

On his top domestic priorities: Bring revolutionary improvements in public schools; extend health care to every child and expand it to as many of their families as possible; protect the environment in a way that creates new jobs, and complete the Reinventing Government process and adopt campaign-finance reform.
Source: Interview in Business Week, p. 42-43 Dec 20, 1999

“Stay and fight!” invokes passion, loyalty, and purpose

Gore unleashed a call to arms: “Stay and fight!” he cried repeatedly. The slogan pulled together the threads that Gore has been struggling to meld into an overarching theme: It suggested a passion that his critics say he has lacked. It enlivened audiences. It suggested focus & purpose-a rationale to his candidacy. It helps Gore underscore his loyalty to Clinton during his impeachment. And in a reference to Bradley’s quitting the Senate, Gore said, “I didn’t walk away-I decided to stay and fight.
Source: New York Times, p. A12, col. 1-4 Oct 11, 1999

Four core principles of Reinventing Government

During his first few months as Vice President. Gore [brought] the best new management techniques from private industry, to make government smaller, smarter, and more responsive. - as well as setting an example of fiscal responsibility and emphasizing results instead of bureaucracy. The core principles of Reinvention are: -- Putting customers (the American taxpayers) first; -- Cutting red tape; -- Empowering employees to get results; -- Cutting government back to basics.
Source: (Cross-ref from Government Reform) Jun 14, 1999

Al Gore on Florida Recount

Disagrees with Supreme Court, but accepts its finality

Now the U.S. Supreme Court has spoken. While I strongly disagree with the court’s decision, I accept it. For the sake of our unity and the strength of our democracy, I offer my concession. In one of God’s unforeseen paths, this belatedly broken impasse can point us all to a new common ground, for its very closeness can serve to remind us that we are one people with a shared destiny.
Source: Concession speech in Washington DC Dec 13, 2000

Concedes to Bush; now it’s time for reconciliation

Just moments ago, I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd president of the United States, and I promised him that I wouldn’t call him back this time.

I offered to meet with him as soon as possible so that we can start to heal the divisions of the campaign and the contest through which we just passed.

I say to President-elect Bush that what remains of partisan rancor must now be put aside, and may God bless his stewardship of this country.

Neither he nor I anticipated this long and difficult road. Certainly neither of us wanted it to happen. Yet it came, and now it has ended, resolved, as it must be resolved, through the honored institutions of our democracy.

Other disputes have dragged on for weeks before reaching resolution. And each time, both the victor and the vanquished have accepted the result peacefully and in the spirit of reconciliation.

So let it be with us.

Source: Concession speech in Washington DC Dec 13, 2000

Gore will never stop fighting for the people

As for what I’ll do next, I don’t know the answer to that one yet. Like many of you, I’m looking forward to spending the holidays with family and old friends. I know I’ll spend time in Tennessee and mend some fences, literally and figuratively.

Some have asked whether I have any regrets and I do have one regret: that I didn’t get the chance to stay and fight for the American people over the next four years, especially for those who need burdens lifted and barriers removed, especially for those who feel their voices have not been heard. I heard you and I will not forget.

I’ve seen America in this campaign and I like what I see. It’s worth fighting for and that’s a fight I’ll never stop.

As for the battle that ends tonight, I do believe as my father once said, that no matter how hard the loss, defeat might serve as well as victory to shape the soul and let the glory out.

And now, my friends, in a phrase I once addressed to others, it’s time for me to go.

Source: Concession speech in Washington DC Dec 13, 2000

Counting all votes removes cloud from presidency

Q: Why not just come out and turn the tables on them and say, “I believe I won the election. And I believe they are trying to steal the election”?

A: Well, I’ve never used the phrase “steal the election.” I think that’s an intemperate phrase. And I think that both Governor Bush and I have an obligation during this period when the votes are yet to be counted to try to pave the way for whichever one of us wins to be able to unify the country.

You know, the only way to avoid having a cloud over the next president is to count all the votes. Because our country is based on the consent of the governed, and the consent of the governed can only come through a vote by the people. And all the people who vote legally have to have their votes counted; that’s the basic principle. If all of the votes are counted, that’s the best way to confer legitimacy on the outcome of the election.

Source: Gore interview with CNN’s John King Nov 29, 2000

Again offers statewide recount; Bush again rejects it

Two weeks ago, I proposed to forego any legal challenge if Gov. Bush would let a complete and accurate count go forward, either in the counties where it was proposed or in the full state of Florida. He rejected that proposal and instead became the first to file lawsuits and now, thousands of votes still have not been counted.

This morning we have proposed to the court in Tallahassee a plan to have all the ballots counted in seven days starting tomorrow morning. And to have the court proceedings fully completed one or two days after that.

Once we have that full and accurate count of the ballots cast, then we will know who our next president is and our country can move forward. Unfortunately, just about an hour ago Gov. Bush’s lawyers rejected this proposal. Instead, they have proposed two weeks of additional court proceedings and additional hearings right up to the Dec. 12 deadline for seating electors, and under their plan, none of the thousands of votes that remain would be counted at all.

Source: Gore Statement in Washington DC Nov 28, 2000

Still have not had a full & accurate count

That is all we have asked since Election Day: a complete count of all the votes cast in Florida. Not recount after recount as some have charged, but a single, full and accurate count. We haven’t had that yet. Great efforts have been made to prevent the counting of these votes. Lawsuit after lawsuit has been filed to delay the count and to stop the counting for many precious days between Election Day and the deadline for having the count finished.

And this would be over long since, except for those efforts to block the process at every turn. Many thousands of votes that were cast on Election Day have not yet been counted at all, not once.

There are some who would have us bring this election to the fastest conclusion possible. I have a different view. I believe our Constitution matters more than convenience. So, as provided under Florida law, I have decided to contest this inaccurate and incomplete count, in order to ensure the greatest possible credibility for the outcome.

Source: Speech on primetime national television Nov 27, 2000

Don’t set aside votes just because it’s hard to count

I agree with something Governor Bush said last night. We need to come together as a country to make progress. But how can we best achieve that? Our country will be stronger, not weaker, if our next president assumes office following a process that most Americans believe is fair. In all our hands now rest the future of America’s faith in our self-government. The American people have shown dignity, restraint and respect as the process has moved forward.

This is America. When votes are cast, we count them. We don’t arbitrarily set them aside because it’s too difficult to count them.

Two hundred years from now, when future Americans study this presidential election, let them learn that Americans did everything they could to ensure that all citizens who voted had their votes counted. Let them learn that democracy was ultimately placed ahead of partisan politics in resolving a contested election. Let them learn that we were indeed a country of laws.

Source: Speech on primetime national television Nov 27, 2000

Offer to Bush: Hand count, then meet to show unity

Source: Statement by Al Gore on Florida recount Nov 15, 2000

The presidency should not be decided by technical details

It is premature to declare this election over. First, votes have yet to be recounted by hand in Palm Beach or Volusia counties. A request for a vote count by hand in Broward and Dade counties is still pending. Second, the overseas ballots have not been counted. Third, Florida’s Secretary of State has said that this election would not be completed for some time. Fourth, serious questions have been raised about Palm Beach County. The Presidency should not be determined by technicalities.
Source: Statement by Gore Campaign Chairman William Daley Nov 10, 2000

Resolve election according to Constitution, not in haste

I realize that this is an extraordinary moment. We now need to resolve this in a way that is fully consistent with our Constitution and our laws. This matter must be resolved expeditiously, but deliberately, and without any rush to judgment. Despite the fact that I won the popular vote, under our Constitution, it is the winner of the Electoral College who will be the next President. Our Constitution is the whole foundation of our freedom - and it must be followed faithfully. When our founders pledged their sacred honor to bring forth this republic, they affirmed the bedrock principle that the consent of the governed, given freely in an election process whose integrity is beyond question, is the living heart of our democracy. No matter the outcome, America will make the transition to a new administration with dignity, with full respect for the freely expressed will of the people, and with pride in the democracy we are privileged to share.
Source: Speech in Nashville Nov 8, 2000

Gore retracts concession because Florida too close to call

Al Gore placed a call to George W. Bush between 1:30 and1:45 a.m. CST to concede the election when the media reported that he was losing Florida by 50,000, and all three networks had called the race for Bush. He then proceeded to the War Memorial Plaza to make a statement. By the time they reached the War Memorial, the count was down to fewer than 1,000 votes. Between 2:30 and 2:45 a.m. CST, Gore called Bush again. The conversation lasted a few minutes. Its contents are private.
Source: Press Release: Official Chronology of Events Nov 8, 2000

The small margin in Florida triggers an automatic recount

According to information supplied by the Secretary of State of Florida, with 99.9 percent of the vote counted, there is a margin of only 1,200 votes out of millions cast - with about 5,000 votes left to be counted. This triggers an automatic recount. Without being certain of the results in Florida, we cannot be certain of the results of this election. Vice President Gore and Senator Lieberman are fully prepared to concede and support Governor George W. Bush if he is officially elected President.
Source: Statement by Gore Campaign Chairman William Daley Nov 7, 2000

Al Gore on Religion

The purpose of life is to glorify God

Gore preached that America must match its economic success with a “prosperity of the spirit”. While he proposed few specific remedies, Gore spoke of a “cultural pollution” that has despoiled the country’s moral life and of “toxic entertainment that too often passes on the wrong values.” “I believe that the purpose of life is to glorify God,” Gore said in discussing environmental protection, “and we cannot fulfill that purpose if we are heaping contempt upon God’s creation.”
Source: Kevin Sack, NY Times Oct 23, 2000

Abstinence Ed in the context of comprehensive Sex Ed

Q: Do you support the initiative to encourage young people to abstain from sex but not allow discussion of birth control?

A: I support a comprehensive strategy to prevent teen pregnancy and transmission of sexually transmitted diseases that includes abstinence education and other measures. I believe that community leaders are in the best position to identify those family-planning strategies that will be most effective within their respective communities.

Source: (X-ref Families) Associated Press Sep 22, 2000

Voluntary school prayer is ok, if teachers aren’t involved

Gore was asked what he could do as president to bring prayer back to the classroom. After joking that there would always be prayer in schools as long as there are arithmetic tests, Gore said that “in some school settings the impression is given that it’s wrong if a student wants to exercise or display his or her faith or engage in a truly voluntary prayer that the school employees have nothing to do with.” Supreme Court prohibitions against organized school prayer, he said, have sometimes been “taken to an extreme that actually discriminates against some people of faith who wish to bring faith into their school life.”
Source: (X-ref Education) Kevin Sack, NY Times Sep 12, 2000

Lieberman’s morality & Jewishness makes him a bold pick

By picking Lieberman, one of the earliest Democrats to rebuke Clinton during the impeachment proceedings, Gore’s objective is to replace his political partner of eight years with a fresh face that is widely regarded as one of the most upstanding politicians in the nation. In picking the first Jewish running mate -- and an Orthodox at that -- Gore hopes to underscore his willingness to break the political rules and display a dash of daring that has largely been absent from his campaign. But while the choice could energize Jewish voters, it could alienate others who might not be comfortable with a Jew in the White House. In turning to a politician with a decidedly moderate voting record who prides himself on not being particularly partisan, Gore also may have an easier time challenging Bush for the loyalties of the independent voters he desperately needs to win. But that could also unsettle some faithful Democrats who cringe at Lieberman’s breaks with the Democratic Party.
Source: Richard L. Berke, NY Times Aug 8, 2000

Born-again Baptist; serves God & obeys God’s will

His teachers at Vanderbilt Divinity school say that while Gore never intended to get a degree or to enter the ministry, he didn’t come across as a dabbler. A professor said, “He came to get what he wanted. The question of credentials was not important. He learned what he felt he needed to know.”

When he returned to Washington to join the House of Representative, he and Tipper began attending Mount Vernon Baptist Church where they were “born again” in the late 1970s. He was also, at least through his first vice presidential term, part of a small weekly prayer group, and friends say that religious faith is a cornerstone of his life. “I believe in serving God and trying to understand and obey God’s will for our lives,” Gore told Harvard students at his 1994 commencement speech. “Cynics may wave the idea away, saying God is a myth, useful in providing comfort to the ignorant and in keeping them obedient. I know in my heart--beyond all arguing and beyond any doubt--the cynics are wrong.”

Source: Inventing Al Gore, p. 93-4 Mar 3, 2000

Respect Constitution and others when affirming faith

Q: Should your religious beliefs be a private matter?
A: I strongly support the separation of church and state. I strongly support the First Amendment. I oppose, for example, the teaching of creationism in the public schools. I think that any public official who discusses his or her deepest beliefs and principles and faiths has an obligation to couple that expression with an affirmation of tolerance and respect and protection for those who have some other faith.
Source: Democratic Debate in Durham, NH Jan 5, 2000

Faith-based organizations replace govt programs

People who work in faith- and values-based organizations are driven by their spiritual commitment. They have done what government can never do, [based on] compassionate care. Some political leaders have relied on well-intentioned volunteerism to feed the hungry & house the homeless. [But to spiritual volunteers, the] client is not a number, but a child of God. And their solutions & programs are more likely to work because they are crafted by people actually living in the neighborhood they are serving.
Source: (X-ref Welfare) Speech on Faith-Based Organizations, Atlanta May 24, 1999

Other candidates on Principles & Values: Al Gore on other issues:
John Ashcroft
Pat Buchanan
George W. Bush
Dick Cheney
Bill Clinton
Hillary Clinton (D,NY)
Elizabeth Dole
Steve Forbes
Rudy Giuliani (R,NYC)
Al Gore
Alan Keyes
John McCain (R,AZ)
Ralph Nader
Ross Perot
Colin Powell
Jesse Ventura (I,MN)

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Civil Rights
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
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War & Peace