Obama Doles Out Medals of Freedom to Big-Moneyed Cronies

(WASHINGTON FREE BEACON) — Barack Obama will deliver his final round of Presidential Medals of Freedom this week to a group largely comprised of Democratic donors and individuals who have supported him politically.

The White House on Wednesday unveiled the 2016 list of honorees, who will on Tuesday receive the nation’s highest civilian award for making “especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States.”

Eleven of the honorees have made contributions to Democratic committees or campaigns, including some that directly supported Obama, according to an analysis of Federal Election Commission records by the Washington Free Beacon. Twelve of the individuals have publicly backed Obama or his policies.

A handful of the individuals are Hollywood celebrities who have used their stature to advocate for Obama or Hillary Clinton.

Obama underlined the significance of the award on Wednesday, characterizing the winners as individuals who have “helped push America forward.”

“The Presidential Medal of Freedom is not just our nation’s highest civilian honor–it’s a tribute to the idea that all of us, no matter where we come from, have the opportunity to change this country for the better,” Obama said in a statement. “From scientists, philanthropists, and public servants to activists, athletes, and artists, these 21 individuals have helped push America forward, inspiring millions of people around the world along the way.”

The list includes talk show host and comedian Ellen DeGeneres, who has contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to Democratic committees and campaigns over the years. For example, DeGeneres contributed $35,800 to the Obama Victory Fund in 2012 and $100,000 to the Hillary Victory Fund this year.

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