Al Gore, Cabinet minister for climate issues?

Obama says, given the chance, he'd hire the former vice president.

By Katharine Mieszkowski

Published April 3, 2008 9:07PM (EDT)

Make that the Department of Climate Security.

Barack Obama says that if he becomes president he'll give Al Gore a Cabinet-level post to fight climate change, according to the Associated Press. Obama made the remarks on Wednesday at a town-hall meeting in Pennsylvania, where he was asked if he would tap Nobel laureate Gore to take on global warming.

"I would," Obama said. "Not only will I, but I will make a commitment that Al Gore will be at the table and play a central part in us figuring out how we solve this problem. He's somebody I talk to on a regular basis. I'm already consulting with him in terms of these issues, but climate change is real. It is something we have to deal with now, not 10 years from now, not 20 years from now." As Grist notes, it's unlikely that Gore would accept such a post in an Obama administration, considering statements that he made in December 2007; and just a few months ago, Gore said that in the unlikely event that he returned to politics it would be as a presidential candidate, not as a member of someone else's administration.

Earlier this week, Gore announced the launch of a $300 million, three-year campaign to try to mobilize the public about global warming, including attempting to inspire 10 million volunteers, according to the Washington Post. Gore's theory: Lawmakers will continue to dither while the glaciers melt until the public demands otherwise.

Katharine Mieszkowski

Katharine Mieszkowski is a senior writer for Salon.

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