Liberal hero and arch-environmentalist Al Gore tried to save himself a $5 million higher tax bill by rushing through the sale of Current TV before the U.S. fell off the fiscal cliff on December 31st
The former vice president had been hoping to sell his television network to Arab news giant Al Jazeera before the end of 2012 so that his $100 million payout wouldn't be affected by the tax increases approved by Congress and signed by the president after frantic negotiations on Tuesday.
Unfortunately for Gore, 64, the $500 million sale of the struggling channel did not go through until January 2nd and therefore will be subject to the five percent increase in Capital Gains Tax to 20 percent that came into effect in 2013.
The high profile Democrat owned a 20 percent stake in Current TV but fell foul of the expiration of the George W. Bush era tax cuts that expired at midnight on December 31st.
According to the New York Times, 'Al Jazeera did not disclose the purchase price, but people with direct knowledge of the deal pegged it at around $500 million, indicating a $100 million payout for Mr. Gore.
'Mr. Gore and his partners were eager to complete the deal by December 31st, lest it be subject to higher tax rates that took effect on January 1st, according to several people who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorised to speak publicly.
'But the deal was not signed until Wednesday.'
MailOnline have approached Mr. Gore's representatives for a comment, but have not received a reply at this moment.
The deal was completed late Wednesday and will give Al Jazeera, which is financed by the government of Qatar, an American platform in about 60 percent of cable customers' homes.
Current TV, which has become known for its left-wing programming, has struggled to grow its audience since it was launched in 2005.
The channel is available in roughly 60 million homes, and yet just 42,000 customers were watching it on a typical night last year. By comparison, CNN had more than three million viewers on an average night.