Now is the time. With the leading figure among northern democrats now comparing Obama's campaign to his brother's 1960 campaign and the tactics of the former democratic president to those of Harry Truman, the time has come for the south's other leading democrat to have his say.
Sure, Mr. Gore may be a little gun shy. After all, he was early to endorse Howard Dean in 2004 only to see his potential influence as elder statesman and kingmaker in the democratic party evaporate with a scream. And, of course it is by no means certain that Barack Obama will win the nomination, but this time, Al Gore has nothing to lose.
He is now clearly established as an elder statesman and one with a Nobel Prize. He has established himself as a leading voice on one of the most significant challenges we face in the future Barack Obama is vying to lead. Al Gore would do us all a favor by linking the cause of combating global warming to a president with Barack Obama's vision. While we are going nuts with JFK parallels, it must be said that the Kennedy challenge of going to the moon is probably exactly what we need to address the challenge of global warming through technological advances sure to bolster our economic well-being rather than the inevitable and draconian conservation mandates that will emerge if we wait too long. It is possible that a clear conversation about the urgency of such an approach, combined with Obama's clearly established ability to inspire and motivate with great vision, could produce the "moon shot" that would make Gore's lifetime commitment to fighting global warming a reality.
And if not, what has he to lose? I suspect that the personal scars from his relationship with the Clinton's makes endorsing Hillary out of the question, and endorsing Edwards is so unlikely to produce a victory for him that Gore has only one choice left. It is a good choice.
Al Gore should endorse Barack Obama this week.