- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 5, 2017

Late night host Bill Maher ribbed former vice president Al Gore over his 2000 White House loss Friday when a discussion involving climate change presented the opportunity for a good-natured jab.

The two were discussing rising sea levels during Friday’s episode of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” when the host took a swipe at his guest’s widely contested election performance practically 17 years after the fact.

“So when the sea levels rise, obviously we could lose Venice. We could lose Florida,” said Mr. Maher. “And who would know better about losing Florida?”

“Actually, I think I carried Florida,” Mr. Gore responded. “But that’s another… we won’t go there.”

Mr. Gore, a Democratic senator turned two-term vice president, received more of the popular vote nationwide in the 2000 White House race than his Republican opponent, George W. Bush. Mr. Bush ultimately was elected president, however, after a historically close contest in Florida triggered a statewide recount that resulted in him claiming the Sunshine State’s 25 electoral votes and subsequently the White House.

“I do think it’s time to get rid of the Electoral College,” Mr. Gore said later during Friday’s broadcast. “But even more importantly than that, we have to get big money out of politics. The lobbyists and fat-cat contributors hacked our democracy before Putin hacked our democracy, and we need to defend it and put the people back in control.”

Mr. Gore has largely devoted his time to addressing climate change after the 2000 race and appeared on Mr. Maher’s program to promote “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” a follow-up to his award-winning 2006 documentary on the topic, “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Other guests on Friday’s episode included activist Ralph Reed Jr., Republican strategist Kristen Soltis Anderson, journalist Joshua Green and CNN analyst Michael Weiss, as well as Reggie Brown, a Barack Obama impersonator who recited tweets written by President Trump in order to highlight “Republican hypocrisy,” according to Mr. Maher.

• Andrew Blake can be reached at ablake@washingtontimes.com.

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