Monday, November 24, 2008

Barack Obama nominated for Secularist of the Year

The US President-elect Barack Obama is among the 19 people nominated to receive the next £5,000 Irwin Prize for Secularist of the Year. The surprise nomination follows Mr Obama's strongly secularist speeches, in which he makes clear his support for a clear separation of the church and state.

Terry Sanderson, president of the NSS, said: "Mr Obama has a lot of expectations riding on him, and I am pleased he's been recognised as a secularist in the classic American tradition. It promises a much more just society in the USA if he can sustain his principles under the inevitable pressure from the Religious Right. If he is named the winner, I'd love him to come and accept the prize at our presentation event - but I have a feeling he may be a little tied up with other things."

The full list of nominations received, in alphabetical order:
1. Lord Avebury; 2. Roy Brown; 3. Nick Cohen; 4. Pat Condell; 5. Russell T Davies; 6. Richard Dawkins; 7. A.C.Grayling; 8. Andy Hamilton; 9. Dr Evan Harris MP; 10. Johann Hari; 11. Azar Majedi; 12. P.Z. Myers; 13. Barack Obama; 14. Pragna Patel; 15. Salvatore Pertutti; 16. Rabbi Jonathan Romain; 17. Flemming Rose; 18. Ariane Sherine 19. Ibn Warraq.

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