The Goracle Stays on the Mountain

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The Goracle is coming! The Goracle is coming! The Goracle… is staying home.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi invited former Vice President Al Gore to come help lobby members as she seeks to pass historic global warming legislation in the House this week. He was scheduled to address the caucus and hold a press conference with her. Republicans openly mocked Gore’s trip — odd considering the man’s a Nobel Prize and Oscar winner who has transformed from a bearded loser to a revered elder statesman (a lesson any number of Republicans might want to pay attention to).  “How is a Democrat sitting in a swing district going to tell their constituents with a straight face that they were undecided on whether or not to support a national energy tax until Al Gore or Nancy Pelosi convinced them it was the right thing to do?” Ken Spain, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee, said in a statement. “The cast of characters forcing this vote are putting dozens of Democrat House members into a position they won’t be able to defend come 2010.”

Actually, Gore was being brought in to lobby the left – many of whom are balking at the significantly watered down bill. Whether Pelosi recognized that bringing Gore in to the caucus might make the vote harder for some moderates or, as her staff says, she didn’t want him to waste five hours in the air when he could be dialing members, we’ll never know. Maybe it was both. At any rate, the vice president’s trip was canceled; after all, Pelosi quipped, Gore working the lines from home is “more energy efficient.”