20th June 21:27
It's easy to understand why more Americans chose Gore than Bush to be their president in 2000.
From a Madison Capital Times editorial, 8/9/03:
The American people chose well in the 2000 contest for the presidency.
Unfortunately, they did not get their choice.
Al Gore won the most votes for president in 2000.
And, had the U.S. Supreme Court not intervened, he might well have won
the electoral votes of Florida and taken the oath of office on Jan.
Instead, the oath was taken by George W. Bush, a frequently failed
businessman who gained political stature not by virtue of his
accomplishments but by virtue of his relationships, and whose
understanding of international affairs was so slim that he struggled
to name the leaders of the nations that were America's closest allies.
And the rest has been history:
tax cuts for the rich and layoffs for working Americans,
declining farm prices,
botched responses to terrorist threats,
the undermining of civil liberties,
two unfinished wars,
and the collapse of American credibility on the global stage.
Gore has been graceful in defeat, refraining for the most part from
commenting on Bush's dismal handling of the most important job in the
But last week he gave voice to the frustrations of a growing number of
"Millions of Americans now share a feeling that something pretty basic
has gone wrong in our country and that some important American values
are being placed at risk. And they want to set it right," Gore said
during his speech to MoveOn.org activists at New York University.
Noting the recent controversy over Bush's deceptive use of
intelligence data to make the case for war with Iraq, Gore said, "Here
is the pattern that I see:
The president's mishandling of and selective use of the best evidence
available on the threat posed by Iraq is pretty much the same as the
way he intentionally distorted the best available evidence on climate
change and rejected the best available evidence on the threat posed to
America's economy by his tax and budget proposals."
Gore's speech was a masterful dissection of what ails America.
And he pointed the finger of blame in the proper direction.
"At first I thought maybe the president's advisers were a big part of
Last fall, in a speech on economic policy at the Brookings
Institution, I called on the president to get rid of his whole
economic team and pick a new group.
And a few weeks later, damned if he didn't do just that - and at least
fix," Gore said.
"But now, a year later, we still have the same bad economic policies,
and the problems have, if anything, gotten worse.
So, obviously, I was wrong: Changing all the president's advisers
didn't work as a way of changing the policy.
I remembered all that last month when everybody was looking for who
ought to be held responsible for the false statements in the
president's State of the Union address.
And I've just about concluded that the real problem may be the
president himself and that next year we ought to fire him and get a
Last week, Mario Cuomo, former governor of New York, surveyed the
field of Democratic presidential contenders for 2004 and pronounced it
Cuomo said Gore should get in the race.
We don't necessarily agree with that view, but after hearing Gore's
speech, we certainly understand it.
Gore says he is sticking with his decision not to run.
But, listening to him last week, it was easy to understand why more
Americans chose Al Gore than George W. Bush to be their president in
And why they might choose Gore again in 2004.