From mixed reactions to him passing on performing at Donald Trump's inauguration to confusion over whether or not a Detroit Lions jersey representing fellow Oklahoma State University grad and all-time great running back Barry Sanders was an endorsement of Bernie Sanders, Garth Brooks can't win when it comes to politics.
It's no surprise, then, that the country music star shoots down any suggestions that he set his sights on the White House.
Brooks doesn't see himself as a viable candidate because, despite his ties to Barack Obama and Jimmy Carter, he doesn't favor one party over the other.
"Trust me, no one would know which way to go with me because I am so both," Brooks told Billboard. "I really am 'Let's love one another, but don't forget we're the defender of freedom all around the world, so let's beef up.' People don't think you can do both. And that's right down my alley. That's why you can have 'We Shall Be Free' and 'American Honky Tonk Bar Association' at the same concert. Let's love one another and let's pull our own weight."
In early 2017, Brooks spoke diplomatically when explaining why a sold-out show in Cincinnati would not allow him to appear at Trump's inauguration.
"I'll tell you with this whole presidential thing: We got one going out. Pray for him and his family," Brooks said, as quoted by Billboard. "And for the president going in, pray for him and his family to guide this nation.
"We can't thank the Obamas enough for serving this country," the "Friends in Low Places" singer continued. "And may God hold Trump's hand in the decisions that he makes in this country's name as well."
In his most recent interview with Billboard, Brooks also responded to the LGBTQ community's embrace of his song "We Shall be Free" and the line "when we're free to love anyone as we choose."
"That line was about everything from interracial marriage and marriages crossing religions to same-sex marriages," Brooks said. "If you truly love somebody, that's what I'm hoping, as a child of God, that we're doing. That whole line was just about, 'C'mon, man, see past the walls and love each other.'"
This story was originally published on Oct. 14, 2020.