Tulsi Gabbard Defends Ellen DeGeneres’ Friendship With George W. Bush

Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) speaks at the Presidential Candidate Forum on LGBTQ Issues at the Sinclair Auditorium at Coe College on September 20, 2019 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Alex Wroblewski / Getty Images

Daytime talk show host Ellen DeGeneres recently received lots of social media hate for her friendship with George W. Bush after the pair were caught hanging out at a Dallas Cowboys football game. DeGeneres later addressed their friendship on her show and posted a clip of the explanation on Twitter, CNN reported.

“They thought, why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president?” she asked in the clip. “A lot of people were mad. And they did what people do when they’re mad… they tweet.”

DeGeneres expressed her belief that people have forgotten that everyone is different and that doesn’t have to get in the way of friendships.

Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard recently took to Twitter to address Ellen’s friendship with Bush and referenced her four-minute-long monologue addressing it.

“.@TheEllenShow msg of being kind to ALL is so needed right now. Enough with the divisiveness. We can’t let politics tear us apart. There are things we will disagree on strongly, and things we agree on — let’s treat each other with respect, aloha, & work together for the people.”

Gabbard’s campaign has centered around her opposition to wasteful regime change wars and the United States’ relationships with countries like Saudi Arabia, of which she has been openly critical. Needless to say, her comment wasn’t warmly received by many people. According to many responses to her tweet, Gabbard’s acceptance of Bush conflicts with her campaign’s foreign policy goals.

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Regardless, the comment isn’t out of character for Gabbard. She previously met with Syrian dictator Bashar Assad and has been open about her belief that the U.S. should talk to its enemies. Per Reason, she also criticized both Republican and Democratic leaders that are “heavily influenced by the military-industrial complex,” which she claims profits off waging wasteful wars that are not in the best interests of U.S. citizens.

The 38-year-old Hawaii representative also faced criticism for initially opposing Donald Trump’s impeachment in the wake of his controversial phone call with President Volodymyr Zelensky, suggesting that it would “further divide” the United States. She later reversed her position and suggested that — upon reading the transcript of the call — she was in support of impeachment proceedings against Trump. According to Gabbard, the inquiry is necessary and failing to do so will “set a very dangerous precedent.”

Gabbard is set to appear in the October Democratic debate. She is currently in 12th place in the polls overall and has met the donor requirements for the November debate. However, she still needs to hit 3 percent or higher in four DNC-approved polls — or 5 percent or higher in two polls from DNC-approved early states — to take the November debate stage.