On NBC’s “The Tonight Show” on Tuesday night, former President George W. Bush made a rare media appearance to talk about his life after leaving office in 2009.
Bush has a kept a low profile and explained his reasoning for that to host Jay Leno.
“I don’t think it’s good for the country to have a former president criticize his successor,” the former president said.
Bush also discussed the wear and tear of life as a commander-in-chief and how he had managed to handle the so-called “tough moments.”
“You have to believe in what you’re doing, first and foremost,” Bush said. “I relied upon my faith, my family helped a lot, and I had a good team around me, and did the best I could do. I’m also very comfortable with the fact that it’s going to take a while for history to judge whether the decisions I made are consequential or not and therefore, I’m not too worried about it, which I read some biographies of Washington, my attitude is if they are still writing about biographies of the first guy, the 43rd guy doesn’t need to worry about it.”
Bush also elaborated on his brother Jeb Bush as a potential presidential candidate, the Bush presidential library and his father, former President George H.W. Bush.
The highlight, perhaps, was when the former president talked about his new hobby — painting — and presented Leno with a painting of Leno’s likeness.
Later in the appearance, former first lady Laura Bush joined her husband and the trio discussed George W. Bush’s heart scare, which allowed Leno to work in a reference to Obamacare.
LENO: Hey, I want to ask you something. When the president had that heart scare, how scary was that?
LAURA BUSH: It was scary.
LAURA BUSH: Very scary.
LAURA BUSH: But —
GEORGE W. BUSH: I wasn’t that scared.
LENO: You had Obamacare?
LAURA BUSH: It was scary, but we knew right away that — I mean, the very next day he had the stent and he was fine.
Watch (Part II):