Jenna Bush Hager says dad George W. Bush’s friendship with Ellen DeGeneres is not surprising

Jenna Bush Hager is all here for her father George W. Bush’s friendship with Ellen DeGeneres, regardless of the criticism the pair has been receiving.

Last month, eagle-eyed fans spotted the comedian sitting next to the former president during a matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers. And not everyone was happy about it. 

DeGeneres made light of the situation on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” a couple days later, calling for more tolerance and kindness while standing up for their unorthodox friendship.

“Here’s the thing,” she said. “I’m friends with George Bush. In fact, I’m friends with a lot of people who don’t share the same beliefs that I have. We’re all different and I think that we’ve forgotten that that’s OK.”

Speaking with People, Hager said the former president’s relationship with DeGeneres shouldn’t be surprising because of his character.

“My dad likes people that think differently than him, that believe differently, and people are surprised by this,” Hager said. “But my parents raised both (twin sister) Barbara and I had to have our own opinions.”

The “Today” co-host said the former president worked with people who had different lifestyles and beliefs than him.

“If you ask anybody that’s worked for him or knows him, plenty of the people that worked for him have different opinions or different lifestyles, thought different things and felt comfortable sharing that with him because he’s open,” she told the outlet.

Hager noted that it’s important to see people who have differences in opinion being friends.

“I personally, and I think so many of us, miss a time where people who have different opinions get along,” she said. “And I yearn for that. I want my kids to realize that we live in a world when people are think tons of different things and we treat everybody with respect and kindness.”

Contributing: Cydney Henderson

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