Competitive Enterprise Institute | 1899 L ST NW Floor 12, Washington, DC 20036 | Phone: 202-331-1010 | Fax: 202-331-0640
Washington, DC, June 21, 2000 – In an effort to discover whether Vice President Albert Gore, Jr. has made a personal commitment to leading the kind of environmentally enlightened lifestyle that he advocates politically, CEI has filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the U. S. Navy to determine what steps have been taken to make the vice president’s house at the Naval Observatory more environmentally friendly.
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“Mr. Gore’s campaign will soon release an environmental and global warming regimen calling on Americans to make all sorts of financial commitments and lifestyle changes in order to ‘improve’ or even ‘save’ the environment,” commented Chris Horner, counsel to the Cooler Heads Coalition  and policy analyst at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. “Al Gore must now demonstrate how he has provided leadership through his own actions.”
“Does our nation’s number one environmentalist make that sacrifice himself? How high is the thermostat set? Did he call for the replacement of the original windows with more energy efficient models? Does he use the federal-mandated double-flush toilets?” Horner continued. “I think the American people have a right to know. Our FOIA request will find whether Mr. Gore walks the environmentalist walk as well as he talks the environmentalist talk.”
Vice President Gore is on the record calling for these individual sacrifices. As he wrote in Earth in the Balance (page 15), “On a personal level, this has meant reexamining my relationship to the environment in large and small ways – everything from wondering how my spiritual life can be more connected to the natural world to keeping an eye on our household’s use of electricity, water, and, indeed, every kind of resource – and recognizing my own hypocrisy when I use CFCs in automobile air conditioner, for example, on the way to a speech about why they should be banned.”
“While this new government initiative claims to be ‘non-bureaucratic and completely market-based,’ a quick scan reveals that claim to be beyond absurd,” Horner continued “Any program that is based solely on government preferences and tax-incentives is by nature bureaucratic and should be exposed as such.”
CEI originally requested the information on May 10 and filed a more exhaustive FOIA request on June 15. The FOIA seeks to produce a complete environmental profile of the vice president’s house based on the EPA’s home energy self-audit suggestions.
CEI, a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group founded in 1984, is dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government. For more information, please contact Emily McGee, director of media relations, at 202-331-1010.