ATLANTA (AP) — A conference organized by former President Jimmy Carter and others that aims to unite Baptists from more than 30 denominations says major political figures from both parties are tentatively planning to come.

Former Vice President Al Gore, former President Bill Clinton and Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Charles Grassley of Iowa are slated to appear at the event in Atlanta. Among the conference topics are evangelism, criminal justice, preaching, interfaith relations, racism, HIV/AIDS and religious liberty. The meeting is scheduled for Jan. 30-Feb. 1.

The gathering is part of an effort, called the New Baptist Covenant, that's meant to pool the resources of the many Baptist groups and escape the shadow of the conservative Southern Baptist Convention.

The 16.3 million-member Southern Baptist Convention is the largest Protestant group in the country.