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Jenna Bush Hager reveals 'scary' phone call to dad George W. Bush

The Today star recalled the moment to Hoda Kotb


jenna bush hager worried
Jenni McKnight
US Lifestyle Editor
May 30, 2022
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Jenna Bush Hager opened up to co-star Hoda Kotb about the "scary" moment she was forced to call her dad, George W. Bush, live on air in front of millions of people.

MORE: Hoda Kotb shares fears about being an older mom: 'It's scary'

The Today with Hoda & Jenna stars were discussing the final episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, which aired last week, when talk turned to when Jenna appeared on the series back when her father was still President.

WATCH: Jenna Bush Hager recalls 'scary' phone call with dad George W. Bush

"The time I was on it, I think was in 2006 or 2007, and when I was on she said, 'How do you call your dad?' My dad was President," Jenna told Hoda.

"I said, 'What do you mean? I just call him.' And she goes, 'OK', and she wheeled out an old school telephone and said, 'So, you just call straight to the White House? Let's do it.'"

MORE: Jenna Bush Hager - a former teacher - shares message about heartbreaking Texas school shooting

MORE: Jenna Bush Hager shares rare family photo after reuniting with her famous parents

As a clip of the moment aired in the background, Jenna explained to Hoda that she was panicking about what her dad would say. "I was freaking! I was scared," she admitted.

jenna bush hager ellen© Today

Jenna called her dad at the White House live on Ellen

 Jenna added: "What if he said something inappropriate? I didn't know what he would do. I was very scared."

Jenna then recalled the brief conversation the pair had, and luckily, her fears were unfounded.

Jenna's trip down memory lane comes after she and Hoda butted heads during a conversation about burger toppings. Hoda was left horrified when she asked Jenna whether she prefers dill or sweet pickles - and she opted for the latter.

jenna bush hager george w bush© Photo: Getty Images

Jenna and her father are very close

"Sweet? Who does sweet?" Hoda asked as her co-host exclaimed: "I do sweet!" with a frustrated expression on her face.

It was then Jenna's turn to quiz Hoda as the mom-of-two revealed she likes her bun "soft and mushy" and straight out of the packet instead of toasted as Jenna prefers.

The pair - who sported a whole host of bemused expressions during the interaction - argued but ultimately got to indulge in their perfect burger when it was placed in front of them on-air.

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