You are here:   Al Gore > How the US's Climate of Opinion Changed

Where did all those green jobs go? President Obama visits a General Electric plant in Schenectady, New York (AP Photo)

The global warming fad is waning. At the same time, a majority of the American people have realised that the policies proposed to address global warming would cause increases in energy prices ranging from substantial to immense. This shift in public opinion presents an equally immense opportunity to President Obama's Republican opponent in the November 2012 election. Whether the Republican nominee takes advantage of the opportunity depends on two factors.

First, it depends on whether the issue is needed at all. The apparent collapse of America's feeble recovery and the fact that Obama's economic policies are counterproductive across the board make it possible that the president will be overwhelmingly defeated and hence no particular policy difference will matter. Second, the numerous Republican candidates for the nomination are not equally capable of making the issue stick or even of grasping what is at stake for America's future. In my opinion, Texas Governor Rick Perry is capable of taking full advantage of the opportunity and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney clearly is not. 

Nonetheless this could be the first presidential campaign in which global warming policies or, more precisely, energy-rationing policies that were initially promoted to address global warming, play a prominent role. It could be argued that Al Gore lost to George W. Bush in 2000 because of it, but that is not because Gore ran on the issue. Although Gore had already set himself up as the political leader of the global warming movement before Bill Clinton chose him as his running mate in 1992, he barely mentioned the issue in the 2000 campaign: even then his political operatives understood that it was a loser with the American electorate. If Gore had won West Virginia, hitherto a solidly Democratic state, he would have secured a majority in the electoral college and been elected president. He lost it because voters figured out that the first casualty of Gore's global warming agenda would be West Virginia's major industry: coal.

Nor did global warming play any role in the 2004 or 2008 presidential elections. Senator John Kerry, a global warming true believer, barely mentioned it in his 2004 campaign against President Bush, who had staked out an incoherent middle position on the issue. Bush accepted that global warming was a problem, but argued that doing    anything about it would be too costly, while at the same time pursuing a number of piecemeal measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

View Full Article
James Rust
October 1st, 2011
12:10 AM
Great article. Some Republcan shoud use energy issues as a campaign platform and rid the country of all elected officals that use CAGW as a means of ruining the country. Renewable energy sources can be summarized thus: "Would you buy cars that cost two to ten times competitor models that only runs 2 to 3 hours per day. Obviously. some will because battery powered cars are being sold." Germany is a green country with about one half the world's installed solar energy. The residential cost of electricity in Germany is 35 cents per kilowatt-hour and rising. China is our competitor with more than three quarters of its electricity coming from coal and electricity selling for 3 cents per kilowatt-hour. James Rust

John K. Oswlad
September 30th, 2011
1:09 PM
Bachmann is the gal. But the $64,000.00 question is whether she is electable. She has taken a consistenty strong stance against the fraud that is global warming; sees the socialist agenda behind the scam and clearly articulates same to the public. She is a conservative through and through and will start the process of dismantling big government. As to her lack of executive experience, the same never stopped Lincoln from being a great President. Problem is that she will be portrayed as a "right-wing extremist", insensitive to the needs of the "little guy". Her intelligence will be attacked (unjustly) and her Christian faith will be said to be exclusionary. Because of these qualities (attributes), she will be attacked with a vigor from the Left that no other Republican candidate would engender. America needs Michele Bachmann. But does America WANT Michele Bachmann is the real question.

Thomas Burton
September 30th, 2011
2:09 AM
Mitt Romney--what a fraud. He will say anything to get elected. He was a liberal governor in Massachusetts, but now claims to be a conservative. He would be worse than Bush.

Bob McDougal
September 28th, 2011
10:09 PM
ALGORE was pushing it so I knew it had to be a lie!

Post your comment

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.