Former Vice President and climate change leader Al Gore was supposed to meet exclusively with Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka when he entered Trump Tower on Monday.
In fact, Trump transition team spokesperson Jason Miller told reporters on a conference call that Donald Trump would not be participating in the meeting with Gore, and that Ivanka Trump would be meeting with the former Vice President about climate change.
However, Gore told pool reporters in the Trump Tower lobby that the “bulk of the time” he spent with the Trumps was with the President-elect, himself. “I had a lengthy and very productive session with the President-elect,” Gore told reporters. “It was a sincere search for areas of common ground.”
The areas of common ground between the two men may be very little. Donald Trump is a staunch climate change denier, famously tweeting his belief that global warming is a hoax orchestrated by the Chinese in order to make United States manufacturing non-competitive.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
On the other hand, since his heartbreaking election loss to George W. Bush in 2000, Gore has made climate change his life’s mission. He created and starred in the 2006 documentary ‘An Inconvenient Truth,’ which framed the climate issue as a coming catastrophe. He has also pushed for dramatic cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.
Gore closed his statement to the press on Monday by saying that he found the meeting to be an “extremely interesting conversation, and to be continued, and I’m just going to leave it at that.”
Reportedly, Ivanka Trump wants to make fighting climate change as one of her projects as ‘first daughter,’ though the crossover between the Trump family’s business ties and running the government is becoming a topic of increasing conversation and scrutiny.
At the same time, it is difficult to see how she would be able to champion climate change should her father carry through with this campaign promise of repealing President Obama’s entire climate change agenda, including the Clean Power Plan, which limits carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. He has also promised to “cancel” the Paris climate agreement within his first 100 days in office.