To learn about the question campaign, watch this video, and join the “What will you do for the atheist voters?” campaign page.
Dan Coats, who is currently serving as a Senator in Indiana, began his journey into politics after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Wheaton College in 1965. He then served in the U.S. Army from 1966 to 1968 before earning a Juris Doctor from the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in 1971. After serving as the assistant vice president of a Fort Wayne life insurance company for a period of time, Coats jumped into the political arena when he began working for U.S. Representative Dan Quayle in 1976. When Quayle ran for U.S. Senate in 1980, Coats ran for and won his boss’s former seat. Coats continued to follow in Quayle’s footsteps in 1988, at which time he was appointed to the empty Senate seat that was left when Quayle was elected to Vice President of the United States. He served in this capacity until he lost his seat to Evan Bayh in 1999. When Bayh retired, Coats won back his old seat in 2010.
Throughout his poltical career, Coats has served on several committees, including the Armed Services Committee and the Select Committee on Intelligence. He has placed a priority on National Defense and was named Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany in 2001 during his hiatus from Indiana politics. Coats has a history of voting in favor of prohibiting same-sex marriage and supporting abstinence education, while voting against bills that would prohibit job discriminating based on sexual orientation. More information on how Senator Coats has voted in the past visit On the Issues. Currently, Coats serves on the 112th Congress of Indiana and is a member of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), which allows him to “push [his agenda] for spending cuts and fiscal restraint”.
Outside of politics, Coats and his wife founded the Foundation for American Renewal, which is a non-profit organization focused on “encouraging renewal through America’s founding Biblical principles of faith in God, liberty, and compassionate entrepreneurship”.
When challenged with the question, “What will you do for atheist voters?” Senator Coats chose to respond in a letter:
Thank you for contacting me about religious freedom. I appreciate hearing from you.
The First Amendment of The Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”. This gives citizens the right to practice any religion without the threat of religious discrimination or persecution. As a strong Christian, I also believe America should welcome those from all faiths, and, indeed, Americans worship a variety of religions. This gives America a unique identity in the global scope, and truly makes our nation the land of the free.
Thank you again for contacting me, and please do not hesitate to keep in touch on matters of concern to you
Sincerely, Dan Coats
National Atheist Party