Barack Obama has given out more Presidential Medals Of Freedom than any other president, with 123 of them bestowed upon honorees during his time in office. Musicians who received a medal from Obama include Yo-Yo Ma, Bob Dylan, Loretta Lynn, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor, Diana Ross, and Bruce Springsteen, among others. There is one legend, though, that Obama wishes he had given a medal to but didn’t.
The former POTUS was interviewed by Stephen Colbert on The Late Show recently, and during a segment called “Questions We’re Pretty Sure Barack Obama Has Never Been Asked Before,” Colbert asked how Dolly Parton (who recently moved Colbert to tears on the show) doesn’t have a Presidential Medal Of Freedom. Obama responded, “That’s a mistake. I’m shocked. That was a screw-up. I’m surprised. I think I assumed that she had already got one, and that was incorrect. I’m surprised. She deserves one. I’ll call [Joe] Biden.”
Aside from writing some of the most beloved songs of all time (“Jolene,” “I Will Always Love You,” and the list goes on), Parton has been an active philanthropist for decades. Recently, the Dolly Parton COVID-19 Research Fund donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, which played a big part in creating the most promising vaccine so far.
Watch the Late Show interview segment above.