“I’m going to say something controversial here,” Gore said on Current TV following the debate. “Obama arrived in Denver at 2 p.m. today, just a few hours before the debate started. [Mitt] Romney did his debate prep in Denver. When you go to 5,000 feet and you only have a few hours to adjust — I don’t know, maybe.”

Several versions of the clip were posted on YouTube by mostly right-leaning blogs, and later distributed by a GOP video channel.

By Thursday afternoon, the altitude remark propelled “Al GoreAlbert (Al) Arnold GoreThe information superhighway must be accessible and affordable for all American Rescue Plan: Ending child poverty — let's make it permanent The moving targets of the climate change movement MORE” to a nationally trending topic, helped along by Comedy Central’s Indecision account and conservatives such as Republican National Committee Political Director Rick Wiley, who called Gore’s theory “priceless.”

The terms “altitude” and "Al Gore" were closely tied to mentions of Obama on Twitter the day after the debate, according to PoliPulse, a social-media monitoring project by the PR firm Powell Tate.


The University of Denver hosted Wednesday's presidential debate. Denver is located a mile above sea level.