You may have seen the above photo of Michelle Obama apparently hugging George W. Bush at the opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African-American History and Culture somewhere online this weekend. It was passed around as an image that was, in the words of MSNBC.com, “so moving.”
Yesterday, the NAACP used the photo in a bizarre inspirational tweet, and today no authority less than White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the photo showed Obama’s “genuine affection” for Bush, which, okay.
Maybe that is true or maybe Earnest is attempting to spin the story, as is his job. Either way, there is good news for everyone, which is that Michelle Obama’s warm embrace of George W. Bush never actually happened. Here is video of the hug, which lasted a split-second:
What follows shows that the hug was pretty quick, but it still had an informal affection that one only sees between two people who are genuinely friendly with each other,
It’s true that Deadspin can be rather sarcastic, but this one is a stretch, as the first lady and former president do seem to like each other. Mrs. Obama and Laura Bush have struck up a friendship as well.
Even if they were just kidding, even a curmudgeon like me can appreciate unlikely allies and friends. Here are a couple of pictures from the memorial for the slain Dallas police officers that reinforce that these two kinda dig each other.