- (Photo: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)
The Conservative Political Action Conference will not feature a booth for an atheist organization as the event's organizers have changed course on an initial approval, according to the atheist group.
American Atheists, an organization founded in 1963 by famous non-theist Madalyn Murray O'Hair, announced Tuesday that they were disinvited from the annual Washington, D.C. conference.
"American Atheists President David Silverman received a phone call from American Conservative Union Executive Director Dan Schneider informing him that the ACU board is breaking its agreement to permit American Atheists to host an information booth," stated American Atheists in a press release.
"This reversal came just hours after a press release from American Atheists announcing the booth, one week before the conference."
American Atheists President David Silverman stated that he was told by CPAC organizers that they were concerned about the "tone" of a quote that would be part of their presence, "the Christian right should be threatened by us."
"This is exactly the problem. The ACU, which has invited CPAC speakers such as Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and Sarah Palin, is afraid of my tone?" said Silverman.
"We still want to attend CPAC. If the ACU will invite us to exhibit as previously agreed, we will be there to talk about the importance of religious equality."
Organized by the American Conservative Union, CPAC 2014 will feature several political, economic, and social conservative groups and individuals.
Featured speakers include U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, Dr. Ben Carson, conservative pundit and author Ann Coulter, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, and U.S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky.
Earlier on Tuesday before the phone call, American Atheists had announced that they were going to be part of CPAC 2014.
"Conservative' isn't a synonym for 'religious'," stated Silverman, adding that "a fifth of conservatives seldom or never pray, and the same number state religion is not important in their lives."
CPAC is scheduled to take place from Thursday, March 6 to Saturday, March 8 near Washington, D.C. Silverman has stated that he still intends to go to CPAC as an individual guest.
Representatives for the Conservative Political Action Conference did not return comment to The Christian Post by press time.