James Taylor Hopes Americans Recognize Obama as ‘Remarkable Leader’
Washington (CNSNews.com) – James Taylor, recognized at the White House on Wednesday for his musical achievement, told reporters that President Barack Obama has been too modest about his accomplishments.
In a White House ceremony, Obama presented Taylor and other artists, authors, poets and entertainers with the 2010 National Medal of Arts. The announcer of the ceremonies said, “His distinctive voice and masterful guitar playing are among the most recognized in popular music and his expansive catalog of songs has had a profound influence on songwriters and music lovers from all walks of life.”
Taylor said he supported Obama in the 2008 presidential race.
“We did work in Massachusetts but mostly in North Carolina, back down in my home state, and worked down there for a while,” Taylor said after stopping in the press briefing room after accepting the medal. “Obama carried the state by only 8,000 votes. So those of us who worked on the campaign down there got a sense that we made a difference.”
A reporter asked about Obama’s 2012 reelection.
“I think that the administration has been almost too modest in their accomplishments,” Taylor said. “And it’s remarkable to me that they get blamed for the problems that the people we elect actually haven’t caused. I’m hoping the American public understands who we got here, what we’ve got in this president, a remarkable leader. It just makes me feel wonderful to see him in this White House. I don’t mean to get too political.”
A staffer then interrupted to say that Taylor could not take any more questions.
During the White House ceremony, Obama also presented the 2010 National Medal of Arts to theater critic Robert Brustein; pianist Van Cliburn; artist Mark di Suvero; poet Donald Hall; musician Quincy Jones; “To Kill a Mockingbird” author Harper Lee; jazz musician Sonny Rollins and actress Meryl Streep.
Obama presented the 2010 National Humanities Medal citations to Library of America founder Daniel Aaron; historian Bernard Bailyn; educator Jacques Barzun; poet and novelist Wendell E. Berry; Spanish and Latin American literary critic Roberto González Echevarría; American Council of Learned Societies President Stanley Nider Katz; novelist Joyce Carol Oates; biographer and literary critic Arnold Rampersad; novelist Philip Roth; and author and historian Gordon Wood.