Jenna Bush Phones Home

Commentary by Timothy Horrigan, December 6, 2007

Ellen DeGeneres with Jenna Bush, Dec. 4, 2007

On December 4, 2007, Jenna Bush was a guest on the Ellen Show and the hostess Ellen DeGeneres goaded her into calling her father at the White House. It looks like the President and First Lady were in on the stunt, because they were both home to take their daughter's call. They didn't say much.

Jenna was evidently genuinely surprised by Ellen's stunt. She initially protested that her parents were probably asleep (at about 7:30 pm Washington time) and she moaned that they would kill her. But they were wide awake and she didn't get killed.

It may seem odd that Jenna's parents agreed to be on the Ellen Show, even if only for a few seconds, since DeGeneres is an out lesbian. However, DeGeneres is also a scab: she is one of the few chat show hosts who has crossed the Writers Guild picket lines to do new shows during a writers' strike.

Extra!  [July 16, 2008] A Warner Brothers-sponsored splog called included the following (most likely apocryphal) story in a June 23, 2008 round-up of "Teen Pranks Gone Bad." All the other pranks went horribly bad: people got burned, killed, arrested, etc. I think the reader was expected to find this prank just as horrifying as the others. This prank could have had bad consequences if not for the fact that President Bush had no extra troops available to go to war against Iceland (as well as if not for the fact that he never returned the call):

"A 16-year-old Icelandic boy figured out President Bush's private phone number and gave him a call. He identified himself as the president of Iceland and requested Bush return his call. When the Secret Service was informed, the police paid a visit to the teen, who wouldn't reveal how he obtained the phone number. However, authorities surmise the boy guessed the digits after watching a recent Ellen episode during which Jenna Bush called the president."

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See Also:

Barbara Bush for the
                  "New Yorkers for Marriage Equality"
                  campaign; January 31, 2011

  On January 31, 2011, Barbara Bush endorsed marriage equality