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Gore defeated Republican senatorial nominee Victor Ashe, subsequently the mayor of Knoxville, and the Republican-turned-Independent, Ed Mc Ateer, founder of the Christian right Religious Roundtable organization that had worked to elect Reagan as president in 1980.

In 1981, Gore was quoted as saying with regard to homosexuality, "I think it is wrong", and "I don't pretend to understand it, but it is not just another normal optional life style." In his 1984 Senate race, Gore said when discussing homosexuality, "I do not believe it is simply an acceptable alternative that society should affirm." He also said that he would not take campaign funds from gay rights groups.

By contrast, Gore asked his father to stay out of his campaign: "I must become my own man," he explained.

"I must not be your candidate." Gore won the 1976 Democratic primary for the district with "32 percent of the vote, three percentage points more than his nearest rival", and was opposed only by an independent candidate in the election, recording 94 percent of the overall vote.

During his sophomore year, he reportedly spent much of his time watching television, shooting pool, and occasionally smoking marijuana.

Before computers were comprehensible, let alone sexy, the poker-faced Gore struggled to explain artificial intelligence and fiber-optic networks to sleepy colleagues." as far back as the 1970s, Congressman Gore promoted the idea of high-speed telecommunications as an engine for both economic growth and the improvement of our educational system.

He was the first elected official to grasp the potential of computer communications to have a broader impact than just improving the conduct of science and scholarship [...] the Internet, as we know it today, was not deployed until 1983.

When the Internet was still in the early stages of its deployment, Congressman Gore provided intellectual leadership by helping create the vision of the potential benefits of high speed computing and communication.

As a Senator, Gore began to craft the High Performance Computing Act of 1991 (commonly referred to as "The Gore Bill") after hearing the 1988 report Toward a National Research Network submitted to Congress by a group chaired by UCLA professor of computer science, Leonard Kleinrock, one of the central creators of the ARPANET (the ARPANET, first deployed by Kleinrock and others in 1969, is the predecessor of the Internet).

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