by Gabrielle Russon
Presidential candidate Bill Richardson has watched as he’s lagged in the polls behind the other Democratic contenders. And last month, he saw Al Gore walk away with the heralded Nobel Peace Prize.
Now, Rep. Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.) is making a third attempt at supporting Richardson for the award. He has nominated the New Mexico governor for the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize for his humanitarian work in Sudan and South Korea.
On Wednesday, Gordon sent his letter along with four other letters of support to the Nobel Committee in Norway. Eleven other congressmen co-signed Gordon’s nominating letter.
"We live in a volatile world, but people like Bill Richardson are reaching out through diplomatic efforts to reduce those tensions," Gordon said in a statement.
Linda Lynch, whose husband Paul Salopek was a Chicago Tribune correspondent and was captured in Sudan while on a National Geographic magazine assignment, also wrote a letter pushing for Richardson’s nomination. As governor, Richardson volunteered to lead a mission to help bring Salopek home in 2006.
Lynch wrote: "I cannot think of criteria more essential to the evaluation of a potential Nobel Laureate for world peace than one that points to the type of courage that comes naturally to Governor Richardson. But it must go in hand with the impulse to use that courage for the good of all. Governor Richardson went into Sudan to negotiate the release of my husband Paul and his colleagues, which he did brilliantly, effectively, and quickly.
"But his efforts for them and for others, who have also been caught in the fray, are not one-time, stand alone accomplishments. They are components of a very long and carefully crafted path to which Governor Richardson is committed."