Detroit – In May 2007, Barack Obama came here and gave a speech remarkable for its arrogance in presuming to dictate to America’s auto industry what vehicles it should manufacture. A year has passed, and Obama – newly crowned the Democratic nominee – has returned to Motown promising to mend faces and sooth nerves. So who did he bring with him to communicate his “new message” to the Motor City? None other than auto enemy #1, the Goracle himself, who gave his green endorsement to Obama before 20,000 screaming fans at a downtown sports arena Monday night.
Obama does have chutzpah.
It was an irony totally lost on Detroit’s adoring left-wing media, which treated the Obama event like a visit from the Pope (“Obama vows to lead revival in Michigan: Gore’s endorsement adds dazzle to Detroit rally” cheered the Detroit Free Press headline). Inside the arena, Gore endorsed Obama as the best candidate to “save the planet” even as the state outside flirts with record low June temperatures following a late spring brought on by one of the coldest winters on record. Obama returned the praise, telling the crowd that “Al Gore has done more to educate the world about (climate change) than anyone” — though the candidate conveniently left out that he and Gore had arrived at the event in a motorcade of giant, gas-guzzling Secret Service-provided Chevy Suburban SUVs.
Like a sort of Jeremiah Wright of the Green Church, Gore has been preaching fiery sermons on the evils of Detroit automakers since calling for the elimination of the internal-combustion engine in his 1992 book, Earth in the Balance.
God damn America? More like, God Damn Detroit.
Senator Obama has become a dutiful disciple, rapping automakers for daring to defend themselves against his own job-killing juggernaut of stringent new fuel-mileage mandates, saying “the auto companies would lobby furiously against it, spending millions to prevent the very reform that could’ve saved their industry.” Don’t automakers know what’s good for them?
The significance of Gore’s endorsement in Detroit was not lost on everyone, however. It “certainly magnifies the problems that Obama has with the auto industry,” Tom Shields, a Michigan-based Republican consultant, told the Detroit News. “Al Gore is three or four times worse on that issue, so I don’t know why you would bring him to Michigan.”
An opening for John McCain? Not likely. The Republican presidential candidate is a Gore disciple as well.