Group Pushes Gore to Enter '08 Race

Unhappy with other Dems, Draft Gore says: "He won once. He could win again."

ByABC News via logo
February 18, 2009, 12:53 PM

Oct. 11, 2007 — -- As New York Sen. Hillary Clinton moves closer to locking in the Democratic presidential nomination, some disgruntled Democrats are pushing former Vice President Al Gore to enter the race.

A group called Draft Gore bought a full-page, $65,000 ad that ran in Wednesday's New York Times, paid for by small contributions.

The ad, in the form of an open letter, stops just short of begging Gore to run. "Please rise to this challenge" or leave millions "wondering what might have been," the letter says.

Draft Gore has also taken out radio ads across the country announcing, "He won once. He could win again." founder Monica Friedlander started the group in 2000 in response to the "outrage" she felt about the outcome of the Bush-Gore battle for the White House.

Today, the group is run by a five-member executive committee, including Friedlander.

Members of Draft Gore say they're not satisfied with the current crop of Democratic contenders, especially with regards to their stands on Iraq.

"Look at the other candidates. They're waffling," said Eva Ritchey, treasurer. "They're not taking the strong stance on the issues they need to. Al Gore will."

Despite 150,000 signatures on the Draft Gore petition, the former vice president shows no signs of wanting to get in the race.

In an interview with "Good Morning America" earlier this year, Gore said of entering the race, "I'm not pondering it. I'm not focused on that. I'm focused on how to solve the climate crisis."

He did have some fun with the subject at this year's Academy Awards. After the environmental documentary "An Inconvenient Truth," in which he appeared, won an Oscar, Gore teased his fans by starting his speech by saying, "I'd like to take this opportunity right here and now to announce. … "

Before he could finish, he was cut off by music.

It was clearly a joke, but now his supporters hope that Gore may announce his intentions to run during Friday's Nobel Peace Prize ceremony. The former vice president is in the running for a Nobel Peace Prize for his environmental work.

The most recent Gallup poll, released this week, puts Gore's standing at 10 percent — roughly equal to John Edwards' support nationally.

But most say Gore has a better shot of winning the Nobel Peace Prize, Friday, than stepping up as the next Democratic nominee for president.

"Don't hold your breath waiting for Al Gore to get into the race," said Democratic political strategist Jenny Backus. "The water is already way too crowded and there's a chance he could sink like a stone."

ABC News' Nitya Venkataraman contributed to this report.

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