WASHINGTON D.C. (CelebrityAccess) — An a rare moment of bipartisanship, a group of lawmakers introduced legislation on Tuesday to posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to Aretha Franklin in recognition to her contributions in shaping American art and culture.
According to the Washington Post, the sponsors for the measure includes Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), who is reported to be eyeing a run at the White House in 2020, and Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah), who has been a reliable Trump supporter.
Other senators co-sponsoring the measure included Gary Peters (D.-Mich.) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.). Reps. Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich.) and Douglas A. Collins (R-Ga.) introduced the measure in the House, the WaPo said.
“Aretha Franklin’s musical talents have influenced generations of musicians and political leaders, creating a legacy that spans incredible decades. Aretha Franklin, dubbed the “Queen of Soul,” was the first woman ever inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, was a 2005 recipient 12 of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and a 1999 recipient of the National Medal of Arts and Humanities Award, among other accolades,” the bill said, in part.
“Aretha Franklin’s music served as a 1960s call to action that inspired thousands to join civil rights movements and still resonates across these movements today; Aretha Franklin’s contributions go beyond music and arts; Aretha Franklin was also a philanthropist who supported causes that advanced civil rights, human health, and gender equality.”
Proceeds from the sale of duplicates of the medal, struck in bronze, will be used to support the U.S. Mint Enterprise Fund, which helps to support the operations of the mint.