Blair to join ranks of Pope, Mandela and Mother Teresa
Tony Blair could soon join Mother Teresa Pope John Paul II and Nelson Mandela as a recipient of the Congressional Gold Medal.
The United States Congress is set to award him the highest civilian honour the legislature can bestow, in recognition of his "commitment to secure the world from the threat of terrorism".
The legislation to award Mr Blair the medal now has the two sponsors it needs, Senator Elizabeth Dole and Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite, both Republicans reports the Guardian.
The award, in Senator Dole's words, would honour the prime minister's "outstanding and enduring contributions to maintaining the security of all freedom-loving nations."
The bill will need at least 67 co-sponsors in the Senate - Senator Dole's office says 75 senators have already agreed to back it - and 290 in the House. If the legislation proceeds swiftly, Mr Blair could receive the medal within months.
Explaining her sponsorship of the Gold Medal bill, Ms Brown-Waite said: "I, and the rest of Congress and the nation, thank prime minister Blair and Great Britain for the loyalty, resolve and support they have shown throughout this most recent conflict and the continued war on terror.
"I applaud Tony Blair's extraordinary leadership and his continued support of the United States."