NBC Brings Out Tom Brokaw to Tout Al Gore’s 'Compelling' Movie, Presidential Bid

NBC brought Tom Brokaw back onto the NBC Nightly News on Wednesday to trumpet Al Gore’s “stylish and compelling movie” which “graphically describes the realities and consequences of global warming."

Sitting at the anchor desk with Brian Williams, Brokaw gushed: "Brian, the Vice President's film tonight, which is called An Inconvenient Truth, is a stylish and compelling video version of an argument that he's been making for a long time, that global warming is real and it's getting worse.” Brokaw presumed Gore’s claims are accurate as he touted how “the man who lost the presidency in the U.S. Supreme Court is suddenly everywhere again, the leading man in a new documentary that graphically describes the realities and consequences of global warming." Gore sat down with Brokaw for an interview and Brokaw pressed him about running again for President after heralding how "Gore's high-profile involvement in this film and in other public appearances these days is causing a political buzz." Back at the anchor desk, Williams asked if Gore’s movie offers any solutions. Brokaw offered up a plug for Gore’s hysterical Web site before noting a shortcoming: "Well, they direct you to a Web site called ClimateCrisis.Com. They don't deal with nuclear power which many people believe is one of the solutions that will have to be examined.” (Transcript follows)

The MRC’s Brad Wilmouth corrected the closed-captioning against the video for the May 24 NBC Nightly News story. Brian Williams set it up:
"This evening a documentary film is in the news because of its star, former Vice President Al Gore, and its subject matter: global warming. Tom Brokaw is with us tonight with a look at the meaning here and the subtext. Tom?"

Tom Brokaw, at the anchor desk with Williams: "Brian, the Vice President's film tonight, which is called An Inconvenient Truth, is a stylish and compelling video version of an argument that he's been making for a long time, that global warming is real and it's getting worse. But to many of his former political allies, this is a film about more than global warming. What is Al Gore up to?"

Al Gore, on Saturday Night Live: "Live from New York, it's Saturday night!"

Brokaw: "From the small screen to the big screen."

Gore, in his movie: "Is it possible that we should prepare against other threats besides terrorists?"

Brokaw: "The man who lost the presidency in the U.S. Supreme Court is suddenly everywhere again, the leading man in a new documentary that graphically describes the realities and consequences of global warming."

Gore, in movie pointing to aerial view of a glacier: "If this were to go, sea level worldwide would go up 20 feet."

Brokaw: "It's a long-time favorite Gore subject with a new urgency. So far it's played mostly to the choir, people who go into the theater inclined to want to believe it.”

Brokaw to Gore as the two sat outdoors: “How do you think it's going to do in primetime, so to speak?"

Gore: "We've actually had some screenings in areas where the audiences were predominantly Republican, skeptical. And they came out with the same exact reaction. But more and more people, without regard to political party, are now saying 'Yeah, I get it.'"

Brokaw: "Gore's involvement with the environment goes back to his earliest days in Congress. As Vice President, he helped negotiate the Kyoto climate treaty, but the Clinton administration couldn't get it ratified, and President Bush pulled out altogether."

Gore to Brokaw: "Will there be a successor treaty? Yes, there will be. But the current administration is not even participating in that process. So I think the most crucial question is to try to convince the current administration within their remaining two-and-a-half years to change on this issue."

Brokaw gave a perfunctory sentence to a contrary view: "But James Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican who's chair of the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee, calls global warming a great hoax. For his part, President Bush says he won't see the film starring his old adversary."

Gore, before an audience: "I am Al Gore. I used to be the next President of the United States of America."

Brokaw: "Gore's high-profile involvement in this film and in other public appearances these days is causing a political buzz.”

Brokaw to Gore: “Already your friends and admirers are saying to me, after seeing the film, he's running again."

Gore: "I have no intention of being a candidate again."

Brokaw: "No intention or a firm commitment?"

Gore: "Well, no intention, no plans. And I am involved in a kind of campaign, but it's not for a candidacy, Tom. It's a campaign to change the minds of the American people."

Brokaw, back on the NBC Nightly News set: "Change the minds of the American people about global warming and maybe, just maybe, about Al Gore. Brian, this film, which had a showing in Cannes, is going to be in big theaters. It's very long on describing the problem, but pretty short on actual specific solutions."

Williams: "And that's what I was going to ask. The film is over, you get the message, but what is there about the choices that face all of us on this?"

Brokaw: "Well, they direct you to a Web site called ClimateCrisis.Com. They don't deal with nuclear power which many people believe is one of the solutions that will have to be examined. The Vice President said he doesn't think so, it's too fraught with perils. What do you with the waste? Also the possibility of terrorists getting access to nuclear power. So this issue has been engaged now, and this film will accelerate all of that."
Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center