Dr. Miriam Adelson one of seven to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom


Trump also announced during the ceremony that he's picked Wheeler to permanently lead the EPA.

The nomination of Mrs Adelson, wife of billionaire casino magnate and Republican party donor Sheldon Adelson, drew some criticism. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), retired National Football League quarterback Roger Staubach, former Minnesota Supreme Court justice and National Football League star Alan Page, and philanthropist and donor Miriam Adelson, who is married to GOP megadonor Sheldon Adelson.

The other recipients are retiring Sen.

"Some real fine people have been selected and [the medal is] for giving service to the country, those who have really excelled as Americans and gave back to the country", says Lynch, now executive chairman of NewDay USA, a mortgage lending company for veterans.

Trump's homage to Elvis - who once met with president Richard Nixon at the White House in 1970 - paused for a recording of the gospel song "How great thou art".

Trump also awarded medals to Miriam Adelson, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, Justice Alan Page, and Quarterback Roger Staubach, as well as s baseball player George Herman "Babe" Ruth, Jr. and Justice Antonin Scalia.

Jonathan Ernst  Reuters
Jonathan Ernst Reuters

Trump moved the embassy in May, and Sheldon Adelson, who had offered to personally fund the move, sat in the front row for the ceremony.

"Orrin Hatch ... he liked me right from the beginning, so I like him", the President joked, drawing laughs.

Public Citizen, an American public interest group told the Guardian "it was hard to believe the decision to recognise Miriam Adelson was based on merit".

Robert Weissman, president of the public interest group Public Citizen, said the decision was "emblematic of the corrupt and transactional presidency of Donald Trump". Abrams noted the Miriam Adelson has donated her time and her money to combatting addiction.

President Trump presented the nation's highest civilian honor to a Minnesota legend Friday. "Drug dependency is enslavement, for the user and his or her family and society, and treatment an emancipation", she said in a statement Thursday.

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