Ellen DeGeneres is offering her side of the story after fans on Twitter dragged her for hanging out with President George Bush at a recent NFL game.
This past Sunday, October 6, the talk-show host (and honorary member of The Highwomen) was spotted in a luxury suite at a Dallas Cowboys-Green Bay Packers game next to her wife, actress Portia de Rossi, and the Bushes. Not surprisingly, a horde of Twitter users took issue with one of Hollywood's pioneering out voices laughing with a conservative president.
On Monday, DeGeneres took to Twitter to defend herself, uploading a nearly four-minute monologue that's already racked up almost four million views. After characteristic jokes about "never leaving her house," she addressed the elephant in the room: proof of her having a good time alongside a Republican.
"People were upset," she said. "They thought, Why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president? A lot of people were mad. And they did what people do when they're mad: They tweet."
She followed that up with a screenshot of a tweet she "did like," which read, "Ellen and George Bush together makes me have faith in America again."
"Here's the thing," she continued. "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 it's okay that we're all different… Just because I don't agree with someone doesn't mean I'm not going to be friends with them."
She likened hanging out with Bush and his wife, Laura, to being friends with "people who wear fur," and went on to cite her signature on-air sign-off: "Be kind to people."
"When I say, 'Be kind to people,' I don't just mean 'be kind to people who think the same way you do.' I mean 'be kind to everyone.'"
Fans had mixed reactions to her explanation, many of whom cited Bush's track record during his presidency as evidence that their "friendship" isn't okay. The president opposed marriage equality, which was a major talking point in his 2004 presidential reelection campaign.
Others praised DeGeneres for speaking out:
Regardless, it seems nothing can slow her roll. Late last month, the host of The Ellen DeGeneres Show signed an overall deal with Warner Bros. studios for four new shows on HBO Max, WarnerMedia's forthcoming streaming service.