Trump Will Give the Medal of Freedom to One of His Biggest Donors

Miriam Adelson and her husband have spent hundreds of millions backing Republicans.

Miriam and Sheldon Adelson at President Donald Trump's 2017 inaugurationRichard Ellis/Zuma

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

The White House announced today that next week President Donald Trump will award the Medal Freedom to seven American luminaries: Elvis Presley, Babe Ruth, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, former pro football players Alan Page and Roger Staubach, and “doctor, philanthropist, and humanitarian” Miriam Adelson—who just happens to be married to casino mogul, Republican megadonor, and dark-money master Sheldon Adelson.

After spending hundreds of millions to oppose President Barack Obama, the Adelsons dropped at least $78 million to back Republicans during the 2016 election. Trump wasn’t Sheldon Adelson’s first pick for president, as this 2015 tweet reminds us: 

But the Adelsons eventually came around, pledging to spend heavily to elect Trump. (Miriam Adelson reportedly cried “tears of joy” when he was elected.) The couple recently spent more than $50 million on the midterm elections.

Since taking office, Trump has helped to personally promote Adelson’s business interests abroad. And he shares the Adelsons’ hardline pro-Israel stance. When the US Embassy in Israel was moved to Jerusalem in May, the Adelsons were in the front row for the opening ceremony.

After that controversial diplomatic shift, Miriam Adelson heaped praise on Trump in a front-page column in the Las Vegas Review-Journal—which she and her husband own: “Just over a year into his first term, he has re-enshrined the United States as the standard-bearer of moral clarity and courage in a world that too often feels adrift.” Next Friday, Trump will bestow her with the nation’s highest civilian honor.

 

More MotherJones reporting on Dark Money

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate