Former President Obama says it was a major “screwup” of his administration that he failed to honor Dolly Parton with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
“That’s a mistake. I’m shocked,” Obama said Monday on CBS’s “The Late Show” after host Stephen ColbertStephen Tyrone ColbertObama: Republican Party members believe ‘white males are victims’ Literary group to honor Obama Obama criticizes Trump on pandemic response: ‘It’s not rocket science’ MORE asked how it was possible the “9 to 5” singer hadn’t received the country’s highest civilian award.
“Looking back at your eight years, do you realize that’s the mistake you made?” Colbert asked with a laugh.
“Actually, that was a screwup,” Obama, promoting his new memoir, “A Promised Land,” replied. “I’m surprised. I think I assumed that she had already gotten one, and that was incorrect.”
“She deserves one. I’ll call Biden,” Obama said of the president-elect.
During his eight years in office, Obama bestowed the Medal of Freedom on dozens of public figures and musical artists, including Bob Dylan, James Taylor, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Gloria Estefan and Barbra StreisandBarbara (Barbra) Joan StreisandCelebrities mourn Ginsburg, call for voters to act George Floyd’s 6-year-old daughter becomes Disney stockholder thanks to Barbra Streisand Former Obama Ebola czar Ron Klain says White House’s bad decisions have put US behind many other nations on COVID-19; Fears of virus reemergence intensify MORE, among others.
While 74-year-old Parton has been lauded with countless awards over her decades-long career — including as a National Medal of Arts recipient in 2005 and celebrated at the Kennedy Center Honors in 2006 — the Medal of Freedom hasn’t been one of them.
A Parton spokesman didn’t immediately return ITK’s request for comment about Obama’s remarks.