Before Tuesday night's State of the Union address, there were rumors that President Trump planned to announce that Rush Limbaugh would be honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. But the president did more than that: In one of the most unusual moments in SOTU history, Trump paused the address so that Limbaugh could be presented with the nation's highest civilian honor right then and there. The conservative radio host, who told listeners Monday that he had been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer, was in the gallery and looked "genuinely surprised" as the president asked Melania Trump to present him with the medal, the Hill reports.
Limbaugh saluted Trump before Melania placed the medal around his neck, the AP reports. He received a standing ovation from Republicans and a thumbs-up for the president, though Democrats remained seated. In his remarks, Trump described the 69-year-old as "the greatest fighter and winner that you will ever meet." He praised Limbaugh for his "decades of tireless devotion to our country" and said he was receiving the honor "in recognition of all that you have done for our nation, the millions of people a day that you speak to and inspire, and all of the incredible work that you have done for charity." (Read more State of the Union stories.)