In a politically divided & polarized America, a photograph capturing some warmth across the aisle made rounds on the Internet this weekend.
The lovable picture, shared on Twitter by David Chalian, Political Director of CNN showed the Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton & the former president George W. Bush in a smiling embrace at the funeral of Nancy Reagan.
Around 1,000 guests, including the Hollywood stars, such as Anjelica Houston, Tom Selleck, and Bo Derek, attended the funeral that took place on Friday, at Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in the Simi Valley, California
The New York Times noted, the occasion also “served as a high-level mixer for opposing sides of the American political establishment.”
The former president George W.Bush was seated next to first lady Michelle Obama, his wife, Laura, sat next to Clinton. (The Clintons & the Bushes have had a longstanding friendship. In an interview with CNN in 2014, the former president defined the former first lady & secretary of state as being like a “sister-in-law” to him, and thanked his close ties with her husband.)
Also in attendance were the House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D), the former first lady Rosalynn Carter, former GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, the U.S. ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy, and California governors Arnold Schwarzenegger & Jerry Brown.
“[Nancy Reagan] had a civility & an appreciation for other people’s points of view,” Norman Lear, the TV producer told The Washington Post of his late friend.
Reagan died on 6 March at the age of 94.
In a rare show of unity, politicians from both sides of aisle were demonstrative with praise in their tributes for Regan, former first lady.
“We remain grateful for Nancy Reagan’s life, thankful for her guidance, & prayerful that she and her beloved husband are together again,” said President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, in a statement.
“Mrs. Reagan was fiercely loyal to her beloved husband, & that devotion was matched only by her devotion to our country,” said the Bushes. “Her influence on the White House was complete & lasting.”