Council for a Livable World

Council for a Livable World

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Council for a Livable World is a Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

-based non-profit, advocacy organization dedicated to eliminating the U.S. arsenal of nuclear weapons
Nuclear weapons and the United States
The United States was the first country to develop nuclear weapons, and is the only country to have used them in warfare, with the separate bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. Before and during the Cold War it conducted over a thousand nuclear tests and developed many long-range...

. Its defines its mission as advocating for "progressive
Progressivism is an umbrella term for a political ideology advocating or favoring social, political, and economic reform or changes. Progressivism is often viewed by some conservatives, constitutionalists, and libertarians to be in opposition to conservative or reactionary ideologies.The...

 national security policies and helping elect congressional candidates who support them." The Council was founded in 1962 as the Council for Abolishing War by Hungarian nuclear physicist and socialist advocate Leó Szilárd
Leó Szilárd
Leó Szilárd was an Austro-Hungarian physicist and inventor who conceived the nuclear chain reaction in 1933, patented the idea of a nuclear reactor with Enrico Fermi, and in late 1939 wrote the letter for Albert Einstein's signature that resulted in the Manhattan Project that built the atomic bomb...

. Its research organization, the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, provides research to members of Congress and their staffs.

Policy influence and lobbying

Every election cycle, the Council endorses congressional candidates who are arms control advocates and who support the Council's outlook on national security issues. Since its inception, the Council has helped elect 120 U.S. arms control advocates to the Senate and 203 to the House of Representatives. Council supporters raised over $1.3 million in 2010. Candidates seeking endorsements are required to answer questionnaires on issues and to defend their positions in interviews. The Council endorses candidates for the House of Representatives through PeacePAC. The Council endorsed both President Barack Obama
Barack Obama
Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned following his victory in the 2008 presidential election.Born in...

 and Vice President Joe Biden
Joe Biden
Joseph Robinette "Joe" Biden, Jr. is the 47th and current Vice President of the United States, serving under President Barack Obama...

 in their first runs for U.S. Senate seats.

The Council has influenced U.S. arms control and national security policies for almost fifty years by working on or supporting several issues including:
  • Ratifying the Chemical Weapons Convention
    Chemical Weapons Convention
    The Chemical Weapons Convention is an arms control agreement which outlaws the production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons. Its full name is the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction...

     and Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty
    Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty
    The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty is a 1987 agreement between the United States and the Soviet Union. Signed in Washington, D.C. by U.S. President Ronald Reagan and General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev on December 8, 1987, it was ratified by the United States Senate on May 27, 1988 and...

    , Conventional Forces in Europe, Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (start) and the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START)
  • Establishing a U.S. nuclear testing moratorium in 1992
  • Banning biological weapons and terminating chemical weapons programs
  • Limiting the deployment of the MX missile and B-2 bomber
  • Blocking deployment of National Missile Defense by the Clinton administration
  • Eliminating funding for the nuclear "Bunker Buster" and "Reliable Replacement Warhead," two new generations of nuclear weapons

Father Robert F. Drinan National Peace and Human Rights Award

Since 2006, Council for a Livable World and its research center and sister organization, Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, present the Father Robert F. Drinan National Peace and Human Rights Award to individuals who exemplify the late Father Drinan's commitment to peace and human justice. The award broadly focuses on U.S. politics, political science, physical science, biology, peace studies, and peace and human rights activism.


  • Ira Lechner, Chairman of the Board
  • Gary Collins, President
  • John Isaacs, Executive Director
  • Jerome Grossman
    Jerome Grossman
    Jerome Grossman is a political activist and commentator, particularly on the issues of weapons of mass destruction and nuclear weapons...

    , Chairman Emeritus
  • Ivo Spalatin, Secretary-Treasurer

External links