Thursday, October 30, 2008
American Nobel Laureates in science endorse Democratic Senator Barack Obama
Environmental News Service
WASHINGTON, DC, October 29, 2008 (ENS) - In an open letter to the American people released Tuesday, 76 American Nobel Laureates in science endorsed Democratic Senator Barack Obama of Illinois for president of the United States. This is the largest number of Nobel prize winners ever to endorse a candidate for office.
"This year's presidential election is among the most significant in our nation's history," the Nobel Laureates wrote. "The country urgently needs a visionary leader who can ensure the future of our traditional strengths in science and technology and who can harness those strengths to address many of our greatest problems: energy, disease, climate change, security, and economic competitiveness."
"We are convinced that Senator Barack Obama is such a leader, and we urge you to join us in supporting him."
The scientists warned that an administration headed by Obama's opponent Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona would not be good for future U.S. scientific endeavors that over the past eight years "have been damaged by stagnant or declining federal support."
"John McCain's promise to freeze funding increases for science next year threatens to continue this dangerous trend," wrote the Nobel Laureates in chemistry, medicine and physics.
Presidential candidate Senator John McCain, October 28, 2008 (Photo credit unknown)
"In addition, the reckless statements he and Governor [Sarah] Palin [of Alaska] have made on specific science programs including studies aimed at protecting the grizzly bear population, funding for a planetarium and research on fruit flies that have the potential to decimate crops brings to doubt their ability to manage the nation's science programs," the scientists wrote.
The Nobel Laureates were critical of President George W. Bush. Their letter warns, "The government's scientific advisory process has been distorted by political considerations," the scientists wrote. "As a result, our once dominant position in the scientific world has been shaken and our prosperity has been placed at risk."