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Donald Trump's Medal of Freedom offer to Bill Belichick should be declined, says Massachusetts rep

Cassandra Negley
·2-min read

Massachusetts congressman Jim McGovern would rather not see Bill Belichick bring home a Presidential Medal of Freedom and is calling on the New England Patriots coach to “do the right thing and say, ‘no thanks.’”

President Donald Trump will reportedly give Belichick the nation’s highest civil honor in a ceremony on Thursday after a tumultuous and deadly week in Washington, D.C. Five people, including a Capitol police officer, died while Trump supporters mobbed the Capitol to try and overturn the election results.

McGovern to Belichick: Refuse the medal

McGovern was asked about Belichick and the Presidential Medal of Freedom while on CNN’s “New Day” on Monday morning and said to accept would be “disgraceful.”

“I would refuse it if I were Bill Belichick. I mean — and this president has made a mockery of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Look at who he has giving it to in the last weeks. People like Devin Nunes and Jim Jordan. I mean, please. Bill Belichick should do the right thing and say no thanks.”

President Donald Trump shakes hands with New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.
President Donald Trump wants to award a Presidential Medal of Freedom to New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The president gave the medal to Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), some of his most vocal allies, in a ceremony the day after the riots. Trump has stoked conspiracy theories and made false claims about election fraud. He urged the mob to march on the Capitol directly before the riot.

He also gave the medal to golfers Gary Player and Annika Sorenstam in the same ceremony.

Belichick accepting medal ‘disgraceful’

McGovern was asked what it would show if Belichick shows up.

“I’ll be very disappointed to be honest with you. I think it’s — look this president is not fit to be in office. So anything that he would bestow on anybody to me is meaningless and to accept it is disgraceful.”

There is no confirmation on if Belichick will accept the medal. Politico reporter Meredith McGraw, who first reported the news, said “a spokesperson for the Patriots did not immediately respond to a request for comment.”

Trump will leave office on Jan. 20, the day President-elect Joe Biden will be inaugurated. Trump is facing the possibility of impeachment for his role in the storming of the Capitol.

Sports figures who have accepted the Medal of Freedom from Trump include wrestling legend Dan Gable, college football coach Lou Holtz, NBA Hall of Famer Jerry West and golf legend Tiger Woods.

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