Carlson claimed Gore's supporters "would be terrified" if Gore ran for president; baselessly claimed "nobody" wants Gore to run

››› ››› BEN ARMBRUSTER & BRIAN LEVY

Tucker Carlson baselessly claimed that "nobody, especially his friends, wants to see Al Gore run for president," but recent polling indicates that respondents would choose Gore as the Democratic nominee for president in 2008 over all other potential challengers except for Sen. Hillary Clinton. He also repeated his earlier description of Gore as a "zealot."

On the September 11 edition of MSNBC's Tucker, host Tucker Carlson asserted that those who have said "in the last six months" that former Vice President Al Gore would have made a great president would not actually support him for president in 2008 because "they'd be terrified." Carlson then baselessly claimed that "[N]obody, especially his friends, wants to see Al Gore run for president." On the September 12 edition of Tucker, Carlson repeated his claim that "even the Democrats don't want" Gore as the Democratic nominee in 2008. Carlson also suggested that liberal radio host Alex Bennett, who appeared on the September 12 program, wouldn't "welcome" a Gore nomination; Carlson asked, "[Y]ou're not a masochist, are you?" In fact, recent polling illustrates that Democratic-leaning respondents would choose Gore as the Democratic nominee for president in 2008 over all other potential challengers except for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY).

Additionally, on the September 12 program, Carlson repeated his earlier description of Gore as a "zealot" and agreed with some of guest Mark Williams's smears of Gore and Clinton. Williams referred to Clinton as "the Hildebeast," and as "an amoral politician." Williams called Gore "nuts" and "out of his mind," and compared Gore to a "racehorse" who has been "drugged out or something." Carlson agreed that Williams's description "of Gore talking is exactly what I've seen a lot of the times on the road with Gore. He's a zealot."

As Media Matters for America has noted, Carlson previously called Gore a "wild-eyed religious nut" whose "religion is the environment," and once stated that "it's fair to say that Al Gore is a religious zealot." As Media Matters has also noted, Williams previously said Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) has "got to be on crack."

Three recent polls, by CNN (conducted August 30-September 2), Fox News/Opinion Dynamics (conducted August 29-30) and Cook Political Report/RT Strategies (conducted August 25-27), all found that respondents favor Gore for the Democratic nomination for president in 2008 over other potential candidates such as Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) and former Sen. John Edwards (D-NC). Only Clinton polled higher:

CNN Poll

Hillary Clinton

37%

Al Gore

20%

John Kerry

11%

John Edwards

11%

Russ Feingold

3%

Bill Richardson

3%

Mark Warner

3%

Evan Bayh

2%

Joe Biden

2%

Tom Vilsack

1%

Unsure

8%


Fox News/Opinion Dynamics Poll

Hillary Clinton

32%

Al Gore

15%

John Kerry

13%

John Edwards

9%

Joseph Biden

4%

Wesley Clark

4%

Mark Warner

2%

Evan Bayh

2%

Other

2%

Unsure

18%

Wouldn't Vote

1%


Cook Political Report/RT Strategies

Hillary Clinton

32%

Al Gore

19%

John Edwards

11%

John Kerry

9%

Joe Biden

5%

Russ Feingold

3%

Evan Bayh

2%

Bill Richardson

2%

Mark Warner

2%

Wesley Clark

1%

Chris Dodd

1%

Tom Vilsack

1%

Unsure

11%

From the September 11 edition of MSNBC's Tucker:

CARLSON: Well, next, some political news I really don't get.

GORE [video clip]: In 2000, when you overwhelmingly made the decision to elect me as your 43rd president, I knew the road ahead would be difficult.

CARLSON: Bit of wishful thinking there on the part of Al Gore, but the former vice president turned Saturday Night Live player may not have entirely given up his dream of one day moving back into the White House.

Facing reporters in Australia last night, Gore said he does not expect to run for president again two years from now. But, he adds, he has not completely ruled out that possibility.

Here's what I don't get. Do all the people you're hearing in the last six months or so, saying, "You know, Al Gore was right, he would have been a great president?" Do they really mean it? And if Al Gore decided to run again, would they support him?

No, of course they wouldn't. They'd be terrified. Nobody, especially his friends, wants to see Al Gore run for president. So let's just stop pretending.

From the September 12 edition of MSNBC's Tucker:

CARLSON: Now clearly, we all agree that there is -- there are things to be afraid of. We disagree about what they may be. Here's one I think we can all agree is, frankly, a terrifying prospect. It comes from our old pal Pat Buchanan [MSNBC political analyst and former presidential candidate]. He says this about Al Gore. He proclaims that if the former vice president ran for the Democratic nomination right now, Pat Buchanan predicts, he would beat Hillary Clinton to win the nomination. Now whatever you think of Pat's politics, he's a pretty, I think, smart prognosticator. The idea of Al Gore, I think both of you -- Mark, we'll start with you -- you agree even the Democrats don't want that.

WILLIAMS: You know, if he does, I mean, from Pat Buchanan's lips to God's ear because that would be the Talk Show Host Employment Act of 2008. You know, Rush Limbaugh and I and guys like me are lighting candles every Sunday praying for just such an event. You know, the Hildebeast is just an amoral politician. Al Gore is nuts. I mean I've met the guy. I've talked with the guy. I stood 10 feet from him at a MoveOn.Org thing I crashed in D.C., watching him bellow and sweat like a racehorse on -- you know, has been drugged out or something. He wasn't, but he looked like a racehorse, his nostrils flaring. The guy's nuts, and he's angry. He was up there talking about how President Bush is agitating for the assassination of judges, and then he said, "If the Supreme Court doesn't get its act together, people just may rise up against them." I mean, the guy's out of his mind. It would be very entertaining. I think the Hildebeast would take him down. I just wish the Republicans had somebody other than, like, [Sen.] George Allen [VA], who's a great guy, but I wish we had a little more to choose from on the Republican side.

CARLSON: Alex Bennett, what do you think? And be honest, here. I know we're on television, but tell the truth. The idea of Al Gore getting the nomination again, you don't welcome that. You're not a masochist, are you?

BENNETT: I absolutely am a masochist. If I were really a masochist, I'd want Hillary to run.

CARLSON: Well, that's actually probably a good point.

BENNETT: I don't think Hillary can win.

CARLSON: Why?

BENNETT: Because I think she's got too much baggage. I think it's going to go all the way back to the Clinton administration. And her -- it's just not gonna happen. OK? I think that Al Gore has a slightly better reputation now than he did years ago. He somehow has gotten people to understand him a little more and to kind of feel sensitive towards him because he's not a close-up, fuzzy person. And I think the movie helped. You know, the book, certainly being on top of the best-seller lists, hasn't hurt either. I think he's the best of the lot so far, and that's a sad thing to say about the Democrats.

CARLSON: But will you concede something that Mark said? Mark obvious -- I believe him when Mark says he's been around Al Gore because his description of Gore talking is exactly what I've seen a lot of the times on the road with Gore. He's a zealot. He really is a -- he's a podium pounder. He's a very intense, almost religious figure. Does that make you uncomfortable as someone who's uncomfortable with religion?

BENNETT: No. Conviction does not make me feel uncomfortable. Knowing what a guy's about and not having him sell me a bill of goods, and then do something else afterwards is not something I want in a candidate. And I feel that with Gore, what you see is what you get. And it's not a bad person. It's a fairly good human being who has the best instincts at heart. And I think he wouldn't be a bad choice for the Democrats. I wish there was better. That's all I'm saying.

CARLSON: I'm on your side, Alex Bennett. I hope he's in -- Mark Williams, I think we can all agree: Al Gore, please run soon.

Network/Outlet
MSNBC
Person
Tucker Carlson, Mark Williams
Show/Publication
Tucker
Stories/Interests
Attacks on Progressives, Propaganda/Noise Machine, Al Gore, 2008 Elections
We've changed our commenting system to Disqus.
Instructions for signing up and claiming your comment history are located here.
Updated rules for commenting are here.