(Nashville) -- Celebrity endorsements are nothing new to politics. But, a KMAland native and music legend is publicly backing a presidential candidate for the first time.
Don Everly, the surviving half of the famous Everly Brothers, phoned KMA News Thursday morning to announce his endorsement of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Speaking from Nashville, Everly says he decided to support Mrs. Clinton because of her foreign policy experience from her stint as secretary of state.
"She has the expertise," said Everly. "She's met all the world leaders. She know it pretty well, better than anybody. And I know she knows it better than anybody. She's been there--she's traveled that road as secretary of state. Obama picked the right person to do that. She's never fumbled the ball--she's always been there."
Everly, who turns 79 on Monday, says Clinton's support of education is another reason for his endorsement. He cites his experience with Iowa's schools as an example.
"I got most of my schooling in Iowa," he said. "I wasn't a great student. But I went to school in Waterloo, and then in Shenandoah. I was a junior in high school--or a sophomore--when I left Iowa. I had two years in Knoxville (Tennessee) then. But, most of my education is in Iowa, and I really thought it was wonderful the way they taught. It was a really good thing--very good thing."
While saying he's never met Hillary Clinton or her husband, former President Bill Clinton, personally, Everly says his wife Adela has. Thus, he's followed the former first lady and U.S. senator's political career.
"From afar, I've followed her career," said Everly. "I really think that she will be good for us. She believes in equal rights, and equal pay for equal work. And in education, she believes in free community college, which would be good. A lot of the things that she believes in, I believe in."
Everly says it's the first time he's ever endorsed a political candidate. While Don and his late brother, Phil Everly ,made great music, Don indicates they were polar opposites, politically.
"Phil and I were so different," he said. "He was a Republican, and I've been a Democrat all my life. He was a Republican all his life, so we could never really get together and endorse anybody, because we were on two different sides of everything. So now that he's no longer with us, I can come out and say what I feel."
Politics aside, Don Everly also shared memories of growing up in Shenandoah, and performing with his brother and parents on KMA in the 1940's and '50's. He also discussed life without his brother Phil, who died two years ago this month. We'll have more from our interview with the legendary Don Everly on KMA News Friday and Saturday.