“To Norwegians it is almost as if the USA is split in two,” Lundestad writes. “A liberal and democratic country with which we feel solidarity and a conservative country for which we have little respect.”
Three of the four prize-winning American presidents have been Democrats: Obama, Woodrow Wilson and Jimmy Carter. The sole Republican is Theodore Roosevelt, who won it in 1906 as a progressive whose outlook bears little resemblance to that of today’s GOP.
Almost all of the other US honorees — such as Al Gore, Martin Luther King Jr. and anti-nuclear activist Linus Pauling — have been on the left end of our political spectrum. “The warmth of our relationship with the US is of course much higher with a left-of-center president,” Lundestad said.
Ronald Reagan was pointedly snubbed in 1990 when the Soviet Union’s Mikhail Gorbachev won a solo Peace Prize for ending the Cold War.