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DID YOU READ

Blue Balls: Al Gore in 2008?

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By William Rabbe and Sarah Scully

IFC News

[Photo: Al Gore on the 2006 Sundance red carpet for “An Inconvenient Truth”]

On Friday, former Vice President Al Gore was bestowed with his most prestigious award yet — The Nobel Peace Prize. Rumors of a potential White House bid swirled as murmurs from the Draft Gore movement grew to full roars. Will Gore run?

To get to the bottom of it all, IFC decided to speak to a cross section of likely voters to see what they think. We’ve commissioned
our first poll ever (!), the results of which can be seen here at IFC.com.

Click here to see the poll results.

Is the award the ultimate qualification for the presidency? Our polls
indicate that Republicans largely do not think so, but, in contrast, a
majority of Independents and most Democrats view winning the Peace
Prize as more meaningful than winning the US presidency. Yet there
doesn’t appear to be a significant impact on polls. Perhaps this is
because most of those polled have neither read nor watched “An
Inconvenient Truth,” despite claiming to know why he won and holding
the prize in high esteem. 56% of all likely voters do not believe
that he is a stronger candidate than he was in 2000. Our poll shows
Gore consistently trailing Hillary Clinton when matched against potential Republican nominees Romney and Giuliani.

Many Gore supporters looked at last Friday as a flashpoint for their
draft to finally catch fire and they, along with media and other
candidates waited on pins and needles for Gore to announce his
candidacy at his scheduled press conference. Instead, he made a brief
statement of thanks and pledged to continue his work on behalf of the
environment. He has to date refused to definitively state his
intentions, leaving the door open – or at least slightly ajar.

Certainly the award is a great accomplishment to add to an already
impressive resume. It is undeniable that Al Gore is an extremely
popular public figure… but not necessarily as a presidential
candidate. National polls within the Democratic Party show
non-candidate Gore trailing Clinton and Barack Obama, though an
official Gore entry could prompt Obama and Edwards to drop out,
thereby leaving a large section of anti-Hillary supporters up for
grabs.

To sum up, we can’t possibly know what Gore is thinking, but we can
take a look at all of the factors that would compel him to jump into
the race or explain why he would not.

WHY HE WOULD RUN

Gore has never been more popular. Devoting his post-political life to environmental causes has won over an entirely new fan base and he has effectively shaken off the derogatory label “Washington Insider.” He has the anti-war stance of Obama with experience that trumps Clinton.

If he did choose to run, he would already have a solid grassroots base
in the Draft Gore movement from which to organize and fundraise. The
Oscar winner’s Hollywood connections could prove very helpful in
financing as well.

On paper, Gore resembles our past US presidents more than any other
candidate, with a family history in politics, Harvard degree, honorable war service and the title of vice president. He is also from the South- a point, which superficially or not, is worth examining, as the only Democrats to win the White House since Kennedy have been Southerners.

While Hillary’s popularity has grown, many party loyalists still see her as polarizing- unable to overcome high disapproval ratings and association with the scandals of her husband’s administration.

Perhaps one of the biggest reasons why people want Gore to run is to
reclaim an office than they feel he rightfully won back in 2000. A
Gore victory in 2008 would stitch that wound.

WHY HE WOULD NOT RUN

There are practical matters that Mr. Gore would need to consider before announcing, chiefly bad timing and inflated expectations. All of the current candidates have been knocking on doors, shucking corn and taking checks for the better part of a year. Even if Gore could
manage to collect as many $2,000 checks as Clinton and Obama, would he
have time to use the money effectively? The Draft Gore organization is a start, but he would still need a substantial amount of time to create active campaign offices and schedule events.

Gore adherents may see him as the charismatic white knight of 2008 — much like another candidate who successfully entered late in the 1968 election: Robert Kennedy. Yet, an indecisive Kennedy joined only after the other Democratic candidates had shown significant weaknesses, thus assuring Kennedy’s success. The Democratic field of 2008 is already
saturated with qualified candidates. While others might see him as
able to “transcend politics,” it is doubtful that Gore’s own outlook
on the field resembles that of RFK’s in 1968 — he simply could not
waltz to victory.

Lastly, of course, Gore must decide whether he wants to be president.
If the answer is yes, then he must then decide whether it is worth
putting himself and his family through the scrutiny of yet another
campaign. Without overwhelming support, he risks being a two-time
loser of the presidency — an experience that must have been
excruciating the first time. Gore has repeatedly stated his devotion
to his current role as global environmental activist. While one could
argue that he could accomplish even more as a president, the fact is
the next president will have their plate full with Iraq and the
economy.

There is rationale behind either prediction but for now, all we do know is that he is not not running. Some pundits have speculated that he will endorse Hillary (despite their rocky past) in exchange for a specially created environmental position in her cabinet. Politically, Gore has more in common with the other candidates so it is possible he could endorse Obama or Edwards, giving them a helpful boost in the primaries. He could stage a last minute challenge, surprising some and thrilling others. It is also possible that he could stay out of politics entirely, endorsing no one and continuing on with his mission.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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SistersWeekend_103_MPX-1920×1080

WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

IFC_Comedy-Crib_Sisters-Weekend-Series-Image

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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