President Donald Trump on Wednesday attended the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush, who died Friday night at the age of 94. All living former presidents and first ladies were also present, but it was Trump’s arrival that got the most attention, and how he seemed to turn the whole thing awkward.
Check out the mood before Trump arrived:
The Obamas and Clintons share a quick laugh inside the National Cathedral. Trumps have not been seated yet. pic.twitter.com/oHgPe5FXW1
— Monica Alba (@albamonica) December 5, 2018
And then after:
This is not awkward at all. pic.twitter.com/JhHBUVjKIE
— Jonathan Ellis (@jonathanellis) December 5, 2018
Fox News’ Chris Wallace described a “chill” when Trump showed up.
— Tob Casey (@TobCasey) December 5, 2018
Taking his seat in the front row next to his wife, Trump greeted the Obamas as he entered the pews. It was the first time the two First Families have seen each other since Trump’s inauguration.
President Trump and President Obama greet each other for the first time since Inauguration Day at Bush 41 State funeral. pic.twitter.com/DAaFA57rQp
— Justin Fishel (@JustinFishelABC) December 5, 2018
The Clintons, situated in the middle of the bench, did not acknowledge Trump. Same goes for the Carters at the other end.
The Trumps are seated next to:
1) The president Trump said was illegitimate (Obama)
2) The president he said assaulted women (Clinton)
3) The first lady/SoS he said should be in jail (Hillary)
4) The president he said was the second-worst, behind Obama (Carter) pic.twitter.com/J63WVhs7HU
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) December 5, 2018
Hillary Clinton did not move a muscle. The shade was real.
I wish I could commit to anything as hard as Hillary Clinton commits herself to not making eye contact with Donald Trump pic.twitter.com/69gZNaZyx8
— Rob Flaherty (@Rob_Flaherty) December 5, 2018
Trump’s posture during the touching eulogies was very telling as well. Trump, sulking with his arms folded, is visibly uncomfortable listening to tributes to Bush — a war hero and venerated statesman — from family, friends, and foreign dignitaries.
And it did not go unnoticed.
I'm no body language expert so can somebody help me read this? 😏 pic.twitter.com/YYpGtvogz2
— Rebecca Starovich (@RStarovich) December 5, 2018
Today was not about him, and that never sits well with Trump.
omfg, Trump is getting trolled so hard at George H.W. Bush's funeral. The speakers are very pointedly praising NATO, NAFTA, & the Clean Air Act, and warning against "giving into our worst impulses."
… and Trump, per usual, looks like a petulant child. pic.twitter.com/nnXl1pVqBa
— Caroline Orr (@RVAwonk) December 5, 2018
On Wednesday morning, Trump expressed his excitement for the funeral, which he called a “celebration,” on Twitter.
“Looking forward to being with the Bush family,” Trump tweeted. “This is not a funeral, this is a day of celebration for a great man who has led a long and distinguished life. He will be missed!”
Looking forward to being with the Bush family. This is not a funeral, this is a day of celebration for a great man who has led a long and distinguished life. He will be missed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 5, 2018
Did this human tweet…"Looking forward to"… Who looks forward to attending a funeral???
— Spike (@SpikeOnTheMic) December 5, 2018
Look, I know you're a fucking moron and all, but it is actually a funeral. Also, he hated you.
— Bonoboism Ω (@Bonoboism) December 5, 2018
He actually did a 👍at a funeral? 🙄
— The Kateroo #union thug (@Kateroo58) December 5, 2018
Look at you trying your best to have an emotion. Great effort! pic.twitter.com/ibeB6BtM4I
— Alexandra Carlton (@Alex_Carlton) December 5, 2018
A picture paints a thousand words pic.twitter.com/JmOw67Q4c3
— Colin Elderbrant (@ColinElderbrant) December 5, 2018
You we’re invited. U came. U were shunned. U looked awkward, like u didn’t want 2 b there. And it was abundantly clear no one wanted u there either. I sincerely hope u heard in each of those eulogies a description of the kind of character & man you are not. #GeorgeHWBush #Trump
— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) December 5, 2018
Sure, there were no disruptions from Trump.
The bar is set so low to begin with, however, that the media praised him for his behavior at Bush’s Tuesday memorial service.
It was not well-received.
Donald Trump is getting praised for his behavior at Bush’s funeral. Our president is such an asshole, we have to reward him when he doesn’t make a scene at a funeral.
— Chelsea Handler (@chelseahandler) December 5, 2018
Still though.. pic.twitter.com/iflwLqf6Jh
— Yujiro Pails (@YujiroPails) December 5, 2018
Because “not pissing on stage” is the new presidential.
— Spice Jones (@SSpiceJones) December 5, 2018
This tweet effectively sums up the entire Trump Presidency
— Sameer Acharya (@sameerhacharya) December 5, 2018
Bush funeral prediction: If Trump doesn't heckle, spontaneously combust or wander out of the cathedral at the wrong moment, pundits will proclaim how presidential he is becoming.
— Edward Luce (@EdwardGLuce) December 5, 2018
In 2 days we’re going to get headlines like “Trump Looks Presidential at Bush Funeral” because he manages to sit quietly for 30 minutes without pulling a McRib out of his suit pocket
— Jason O. Gilbert (@gilbertjasono) December 3, 2018
CNN Anchor: "So how did Trump do today?"
CNN panelist 1: "Well, you have to give him props for not burning down National Cathedral."
CNN panelist 2: "A very toned-down, presidential performance by Donald Trump."
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) December 5, 2018
NBC NEWS headline: "Trump sits still like a big boy for 45 minutes, reminds the nation how statesmanlike he can be"
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) December 5, 2018
One exception though: Trump was criticized for not reciting the Apostle’s Creed during the Tuesday service. We will let the religious right grapple with that.
President George Herbert Walker Bush (1924-2018).