What Dolly Parton Wants From America’s Political Leaders

Dolly Parton has (mostly) stayed out of politics for the entirety of her career. But that doesn’t mean she’s not without expectations for the nation’s political leaders. In an interview she gave in Aug. 2020, Parton spoke about why she stays out of politics and what she’d like to see from American politicians going forward.

Dolly Parton on the red carpet in a red dress.
Dolly Parton | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Why Dolly Parton doesn’t talk about politics

USA Today asked Parton if staying out of politics was a choice.

“Well, it is a choice, because I don’t like to get involved in politics, because first of all, I have as many Republican fans as I do Democrats,” she said. “I don’t want to offend anybody, I have a right to myself. Like God gave us free will, America gave us free speech, but you’ve got to be responsible for anything you say and do.”

Parton went on to say that she takes in both conservative and liberal news coverage. She says she’s more concerned with a person’s intentions and actions than their political party.

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“I’m more about the person and about the message,” she said. “I like watching all of it. I watch Fox News. I watch CNN. It’s like I don’t even know what to believe, but I just watch it out of curiosity because it’s good television. Crazy, lunacy, but I just don’t get involved. I am not political, and I refuse to get caught up in political things. I just look at it, and I just think what I think.”

Back in 2020 at least, it seemed Parton expressed a degree of distrust toward politicians.

“I’m just saying, good Lord, what are these people doing? Crazy. They don’t care about us,” she said.

Dolly Parton’s advice for politicians

“You need to pray more,” she said when asked her advice for political leaders. “You need to look at people. No matter who’s in [charge], you’ve got to look at who you’re supposed to be representing. We’re all God’s children. We’re all out here trying to do our thing.”

The Queen of Country reiterated that a politician’s job should be for and by the people first and foremost.

“I don’t care if that’s Bush or Clinton or Obama or Trump or Biden or whoever it may be,” she said. “They need to think more about the people instead of about the party.”

‘A little more peace, a little more love, a little more harmony’

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Parton wants everyone to stop being so mad at each other.

“It’s like I don’t understand why we just have to fight about every damn thing in the world,” she said. “It’s like we can’t even say hello. It’s like, ‘Well, what do you mean by that?’ You know? It’s like it’s just crazy.”

When asked what change she’d like to see in the world, Parton called for more peace.

“If we could just be peaceful, if we could just try to work through things with a little more peace, a little more love, a little more harmony, a little more understanding,” she said. “I pray about it every day.”