Minnesota’s Congressional delegation on Monday is introducing a resolution to posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to pop superstar Prince, citing his “indelible mark on Minnesota and American culture,” The Associated Press has learned.
The medal is one of the nation’s highest civilian honors and past recipients include George Washington, the Wright Brothers, Rosa Parks, Mother Teresa, the Navajo Code Talkers, the Tuskegee Airmen and the Dalai Lama.
Prince, whose hits include “Little Red Corvette,” ″Let’s Go Crazy” and “When Doves Cry,” died April 21, 2016, of an accidental fentanyl overdose at age 57 at his Paisley Park estate in Chanhassen, Minnesota.
The legislation notes that Prince is “widely regarded as one of the greatest musicians of his generation,” with seven Grammy Awards, six American Music Awards, an Oscar for the score to “Purple Rain” and a Golden Globe.
It adds that he is a member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, sold more than 150 million records worldwide and that “Purple Rain” was added by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry. The bill also puts into the Congressional record the glyph he used instead of his name for a time that Prince called “The Love Symbol.”
Under the rules, Congressional Gold Medals require the support of at least two-thirds of the members of both the Senate and House of Representatives before they can be signed into law by the president. The Prince legislation will be introduced in the House and Senate.
If the gold medal is approved and made, the bill asks that it be given to the Smithsonian Institution, which should make it available for display at the National Museum of African American History and Culture or on loan.