Former Vice President Al Gore spoke to over a thousand Iowa Democrats Saturday night, urging the crowd to "hold people accountable" for the blunders of the Bush era.
"I hope that my words will be heard beyond this room by those who are still undecided," Gore told the crowd gathered for the Iowa Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner.
Gore began by paying homage to Iowans for their support of him in campaigns of the past, but he quickly moved on to a sometimes fiery assessment of the campaign of 2008. "It is time to hold them accountable. Honestly ladies and gentlemen, there’s been so much I can’t deal with it," Gore said, to laughter. "It’s gotten to the point when a new outrage occurs, I’ve got to download some existing outrage to make room for the new outrage. Are you like that? Any of you had that feeling? You know what I’m talkin’ about? Thirty-one days is the time to deal with it." The crowd cheered and applauded.
Gore spoke for 45 minutes, ending with a focus on his signature issue, the environment. Gore suggested the flooding which devastated large swaths of Iowa this spring was due to climate change. "The scientists have warned us for years that the accumulation of global warming pollution in the atmosphere is trapping more of sun’s heat and raising temperatures and in the process evaporation more moisture off the oceans and the warmer air holds more of the moisture," Gore said. "The average humdity worldwide, everywhere in the world, has gone up dramatically and when storm conditions present themselves more rainfall and snowfall falls at the same time and it causes historic flooding."
Gore also said both hurricanes and tornadoes seem to more severe and he specifically mentioned the powerful tornado which struck Iowa on May 25th. "Never in history has an F5 tornado stayed on the ground for 50 miles," Gore said of the twister that struck Parkersburg, New Hartford and other areas.
You can listen to Gore’s entire speech by clicking on the audio link below.
This is the fifth time Gore has been a headliner for the Iowa Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner. For his first appearance, back in 1987, Gore delivered a speech signaling his exit from campaigning Iowa, as Gore then said the Iowa Caucuses were too dominated by the Democratic Party’s liberal wing. Gore’s appearance at the 1999 Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner marked a turning point in his campaign against party rival Bill Bradley and in the 2000 election, Iowa was among the state’s in Gore’s column on Election Night. "To Iowa, thank you for supporting me in the year 2000…I am so grateful. God bless you. I will never forget it. Never, ever, ever," Gore said. The crowd got to its feet to applaud.