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Originally published Wednesday, November 5, 2008 at 12:00 AM

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British paper drops topless "Page 3 girl" for Obama

Readers of Britain's popular Sun tabloid got a surprise Wednesday: When they opened their paper, they found a photo of Barack Obama instead of the traditional topless "Page 3 girl."

The Associated Press

LONDON — Readers of Britain's popular Sun tabloid got a surprise Wednesday: When they opened their paper, they found a photo of Barack Obama instead of the traditional topless "Page 3 girl."

The president-elect was fully clothed and looked dignified in an editorial space usually reserved for models wearing nothing but bikini bottoms.

The Page 3 feature has helped bring the Sun more than 3 million daily readers — and editors warned that naked beauties will vastly outnumber clothed candidates in the future.

"It's not done very often," said spokeswoman Lorna Carmichael. "It has to be a very special occasion. We only do it after very dramatic news, like the 9/11 attacks or the London transport bombings, things like that."

She said the paper published a record six editions overnight and removed the Page 3 girl after the first two editions.

The paper did not receive any complaints from readers about the photo substitution, she added.

Sun managing editor Graham Dudman said the Page 3 feature would be back in place Thursday.

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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