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Gore calls lack of climate-related questions in presidential debates 'pathetic'

"That is pathetic," Gore said in an interview Wednesday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."  

Gore was defending the recent sale of Current TV to Al Jazeera from criticism that it was hypocritical for him to sell the network to a Qatar-based media conglomerate with oil-industry ties.

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When asked if he was personally comfortable to have his media organization essentially "profit from oil," Gore said, "Well, I see if differently.

"I understand the criticism, of course, but Al Jazeera has long since established itself as a really high-quality news-gathering network, and I think the addition of Al Jazeera will be a big net plus. And by the way, their climate coverage is far more extensive and high-quality compared to any other network in the U.S.," said Gore.

He went on to call Qatar the United States' "strongest ally" in the Arab world.

"They also have a very ambitious plan to shift to renewables ... the world is changing and we are part of a global media landscape now and getting points of view that are not just the same is a good thing," he said.

The former vice president has been doing televisions interviews to promote his new book, The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change, a tome about a planet on the brink of unprecedented change.

"One of the main themes of this book is that we have two large and powerful tools to use in shaping our future. One is democracy and one is capitalism, but both have been hacked and both are in need of reform," he said.

Gore praised President Obama, saying he deserves "credit" for trying repeatedly to reach across the aisle.

"You know, you can criticize the president on many fronts, and many of us have. I think you have to give the president credit for trying over and over again ... to reach across that divide," Gore said. 

On the "Today" show Tuesday, Gore called the climate emphasis in Obama's inaugural speech "fantastic."‬

“He has put his presidency behind this issue now,” Gore said Tuesday.