December 16, 2002


OUT WITH THE AL: Al Gore did two things this weekend that pleasantly surprised me: he did a good job hosting "Saturday Night Live," and he announced that he's not running for president in 2004.
While it was missing what could have been a classic confrontation between the real Gore and the Darrell Hammond-played version, the show was chock-full of clever sketches that made good use of the ex-VP, especially his visit to the set of "The West Wing," his creepy-funny making out with Tipper, and most of all, his "Bachelor"-based love scene with Joseph Lieberman. While not the best SNL episode of all time by any means, the show nonetheless was much more than I expected from one of the dullest politicians in recent memory. Also wonderful to see Phish again (as they've been even more reclusive than Gore since 2000), and in sketches, too! I look forward to their Meadowlands show in February...
If Gore had announced in January that he wouldn't be running for president, I wouldn't have been floored. But that the announcement came this early, the day after the SNL appearance and after months of Gore and Gore on every talk show in the world threw me and everyone else for a loop. As a Democrat I'm happy at the news, but as a political junkie I'm ecstatic- I don't think I could've stomached another Bush-Gore election, and a contested Democratic primary should make things quite fascinating for the next two years. And I love that presidential campaigns now last two-plus years- it really says something that it's election season more often than it isn't.

Posted by Stephen Silver at December 16, 2002 07:11 PM
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