Michelle Obama talks about sweet exchange with George W. Bush at his father's funeral

On tour for her book "Becoming," the former first lady talked about the moment many are calling a touching show of kindness and bipartisanship.
Michelle Obama
Nathan Congleton / NBC

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/ Source: TODAY
By Ronnie Koenig

Former first lady Michelle Obama and President George W. Bush have publicly shared some touching moments this year, specifically passing a mint or cough drop in what's become a kind tradition of sorts between the two.

Speaking to a sold-out arena in San Jose, California, while on tour for her memoir, "Becoming," the former first lady addressed the 43rd president covertly passing her a mint during his father's funeral.

"He has the presence of mind and the sense of humor to bring me a mint, and he made it a point to give me that mint right then and there and that's the beauty of George Bush," Obama said. It was just one of many observations she shared at the SAP Center, where fans waited in line outside to be the first to enter the venue.

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In the video, Bush is seen greeting the Obamas at the December 5th funereal of his father, 41st President George H.W. Bush. The 43rd president slyly palms off a mint to Michelle, a follow up to the spontaneous moment that happened on September 1, at the funereal of Sen. John McCain. During the memorial service, cameras caught W. taking what turned out to be a cough drop from his wife, Laura Bush, and passing it to Michelle.

Obama explained the special connection to Bush when the cough drop moment first went viral.

"President Bush and I, we are forever seatmates because of protocol, and that's how we sit at all the official functions, " she said. "He's my partner in crime at every major thing where all the 'formers' gather. So we're together all the time."

Commenters on social media called the candy exchange a bipartisan gesture. Actor Holly Robinson Peete Tweeted out her thoughts after Bush and Obama recreated the sweet moment with the mint at HW's funereal.

"My favorite part was (when) George Bush kept his eyes forward trying to be sneaky but then snuck a quick look down to see that she got it,” she tweeted. “I love this moment so much. Their candy exchange is neither mean, petty, dishonest, or vile.”

Others echoed Robinson's sentiment, saying that the moment reminded them of a grandpa or favorite uncle passing them candy in church.

Obama will continue her book tour in support of "Becoming" through the new year, sharing more life experiences and no doubt inspiring audiences around the world.