Gore said the centerpiece of his "vision" would be a series of regular town meetings across the country to connect middle America to the Oval Office.
The vice president said he wants to use the town meetings to help establish a better personal rapport with the American public something his advisers say is a major problem for his candidacy. It may not be a new idea, but it is one that Gore hopes will help him distinguish himself from Mr. Clinton and allow him to emerge from the president's shadow.
Gore told the New York Times Saturday that he will embrace Mr. Clinton for his leadership in promoting the nation's robust economy, but he wants to leave no doubt that "I'm running on my own agenda, on my own voice and through my own experiences."
Gore also said he was pleased by Mr. Clinton's comments this week that the vice president should not be blamed for the president's personal scandals.
"I appreciate what the president said," Gore told the Times. "He repeated what he said in the past and what many others have said: This campaign is about the future."
Gore vowed to lay out specific policy proposals for middle-class tax cuts, welfare reform and the environment in his convention address.
"The reason I'm going to take the risk of going into specifics is that I think people ought to know the issues that are at stake," he said.
Campaigning Saturday in Pennsylania, Gore said he wants to build on the administration's economic successes of the last eight years.
"The role that I have played in helping to shape the policies that have continued the economic progress will, by the time I speak at the convention, be fairly well known and understood."
Gore promised his speech would be "positive, positive, positive," with no attacks on his Republican rivals. "There will be no negative points about Mr. Bush or Mr. Cheney, either overt or covert, either direct or implied," he said. "There will be direct comparisons of our approach."