It’s hard to believe that a 44-year marriage could thrive on a foundation of just three months of dating, but former president George W. Bush and Laura Bush have made it work. The pair appeared on the April 20 installment of Today with Hoda & Jenna where they played a game of “Presidential Paintionary” and talked about their love story.
Hoda Kotb began by asking if either of them were hesitant before getting married due to their short courtship. Laura was quick to reply. “Not really, did you?” she asked, turning to George. He shrugged: “Uh, no. [It was] too late … we were a little older, living out in West Texas and, I’m a decisive person.”
As the story goes, the pair met in 1977 at a friend’s barbecue. Their first date was at a miniature golf course, and they got married three months later. They were both 31.
“So you knew it right away?” Jenna Bush Hager asked her dad. “Yeah,” he said, assuredly. “You should’ve seen your mom. Those blue eyes, oh my god.”
In fact, the former president calls marrying Laura one of the best decisions he’s ever made. “I’ve done a lot of things in my life,” he told Jenna. “And your mom has enabled me to do so in many ways.”
During their visit, George also talked about his new book, Out of Many, One which discusses the importance of immigration, and he and Laura played a game of “He Said, She Said,” where they answered rapid-fire questions about their relationship—including who controls the TV remote (George), who’s more likely to spoil their grandkids (both of them), and who’s the better dancer, (George, debatably).
They also admitted that neither of them loved disciplining Jenna and her twin sister Barbara throughout their childhood, but Hoda assured them that they did a great job.
“I can’t believe how well you did with Jenna,” she said. “She has a heart of gold. She makes me laugh. She makes me weep, and she’s caught onto this job so quickly.”
Still, Jenna was admittedly nervous to work with her parents close by. “Bring my parents to work day!!” she wrote under an Instagram photo of their interview. “I have to admit—I was a little nervous about mixing family and work. BUT I was so inspired by the day: witnessing incredible front line doctors and nurses being sworn in as American citizens, introducing people I love to people I love, having the opportunity to talk about forgiveness and love over fear. ❤️🇺🇸”
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