Atheists grade Alabama congressional candidates
Published 8:53 am Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Washington D.C. — The Secular Coalition for America yesterday released its Congressional Voter Guides for the 7th Congressional District of Alabama and the Alabama Senate race. The Guides are meant to help secular-minded Alabamans make informed decisions on the candidates for the upcoming elections in November, based on secular issues.
The Voter Guide is part of the Secular Coalition’s “50 Secular Races to Watch” list which the Coalition is currently rolling out based on the U.S. House districts that received the worst grades on the Coalition’s 2013 Congressional Report Card. The Secular Coalition will also grade seven Senate races across the country.
The Voter Guide grades the candidates— Republican and Democratic—vying for seats on November 4th. The candidates received the following grades:
7TH DISTRICT CONGRESSIONAL SEAT
TERRI SEWELL – C
JEFF SESSIONS – F
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The candidates were scored on their public answers to six questions relating to separation of church and state issues, including what role religion would play in the candidates’ decision making and their support for scientifically-based legislation.
“The separation of religion and government is something that affects all Americans –including protecting the religious from having another’s brand of religion imposed on them,” said Amanda Metskas, president of the Secular Coalition for America. “Secular values are particularly important to remember and protect at the state level where we’re seeing some of the most egregious legislation in state capitals across the country.”
A Pew study found that the majority of Americans (54 percent) say that churches and other houses of worship should keep out of political matters, and 38 percent says that there has been too much expression of religious faith and prayer from political leaders – a number that has grown to its highest point since the Pew Research Center began asking the question more than a decade ago.
The Secular Coalition for America has chapters in all 50 states, including Alabama, which lobbies state lawmakers on behalf of secular Americans in Alabama.