The presenter and comedian, and self-proclaimed liberal, was seen chatting and laughing with Republican Bush and his wife Laura at the Dallas Cowboys game on Sunday.
The reactions to seeing Ellen and the former president sitting side by side provoked a mixed response on Twitter...
On Monday Ellen addressed the furore on her US chat show, explaining that she and wife Portia de Rossi had been invited to the NFL game by Charlotte Jones, daughter of the Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones.
“During the game, they showed a shot of me and George laughing together, and so people were upset,” Ellen explained.
“They thought, ‘why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president?’,” before joking: “They didn’t even notice I’m holding the brand-new iPhone 11 in the shot.”
She continued: “But a lot of people were mad, and they did what people do when they’re mad: they tweet.”
The 61-year-old then shared a positive tweet, which said, “Ellen and George Bush together makes me have faith in America again.”
She added: “Exactly. Here’s the thing. 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 we’ve forgotten that that’s okay that we’re all different.
“For instance, I wish people wouldn’t wear fur. I don’t like it, but I’m friends with people who wear fur. And I’m friends with people who are furry, as a matter of fact. I have friends who should tweeze more,” she joked.
“But just because I don’t agree with someone on everything doesn’t mean that I’m not going to be friends with them. When I say, ‘be kind to one another,’ I don’t only mean the people that think the same way that you do. I mean be kind to everyone.”
“Even people who are already playing Christmas music. I mean seriously, there’s no excuse for that, but I’m kind to them.
She ended by thanking the Bushes “for a Sunday afternoon that was so fun”.
“By the way, you owe me $6 for the nachos,” she added.