By Ashley Killough
Washington (CNN) — Musician Kid Rock, who was a celebrity surrogate for Mitt Romney, said President Barack Obama wasted no time in jokingly acknowledging their campaign rivalry Sunday.
“It was nice. I saw the president tonight. He said, ‘I’m still here.’ I said, ‘No hard feelings,’ ” Rock said, laughing.
Earlier Sunday, Rock attended a White House reception with Obama and this year’s Kennedy Center Honors award recipients.
Speaking to CNN on the red carpet after the reception and before the ceremony in Washington, Rock said it was hard to see his candidate lose the election but added “it felt great” to have his music played on the campaign trail for Romney.
“It’s tough to stand up for something you believe in. Believe me, especially in my business. I alienated a lot of fans and people,” Rock said.
“But I believe if you don’t stand for something, you don’t stand for nothing,” he added.
The rocker’s popular song “Born Free” became a staple for Romney and Paul Ryan on the campaign trail. The song typically blared at rallies as the candidates exited the stage and greeted fans.
Rock first turned out for Romney in February, where he showed up as a surprise guest at a campaign event in Michigan, Rock’s home state.
Now that it’s all over, Rock said the election came to a disappointing end but stressed that it was time to move on.
“You cross your fingers, you try to move forward, you hope for the best,” he said. “You respect the office of the president of the United States, and the great thing is in four years, we get to choose again.”
– CNN’s Rachel Streitfeld and Shawna Shepherd contributed to this report.