The American Humanist Association applauded Rep. Pete Stark for publicly acknowledging he does not believe in a supreme being. The declaration, it said, makes him the highest-ranking elected official - and first US congressman - to proclaim to be an atheist.
The organization took out an ad in Tuesday's Washington Post, congratulating the California Democrat for his stance.
"With Stark's courageous public announcement of his nontheism, it is our hope that he will become an inspiration for others who have hidden their conclusions for far too long," executive director Roy Speckhardt said in a statement.
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