The former president has shied away from the public spotlight, but he’s remained active on Facebook. 

Where in the world is George W. Bush? That’s the question being asked by Politico this week.  Look no further than Facebook.

The former president has been using social media as his primary way to stay connected with people now that he’s out of office. Bush has been particularly active on Facebook, where he has more than 1.7 million likes—more than any other modern president. Bill Clinton comes in at about 750,000.

Interestingly, Bush has stayed away from the topic of the 2012 race, which was the catalyst for the Politico story. (Bush’s father and brother recently endorsed Mitt Romney for the Republican presidential nomination.) His Facebook feed is flooded with promotions for his presidential library and the Freedom Collection, a website that gathers stories about people who have overcome political oppression. It also includes photos from various fundraisers and trips the former chief executive has taken, such as a golf open with wounded warriors, a trip to Africa, and a meeting with the Dalai Lama.

The fact that Bush has more Facebook fans than Clinton, who remains a much more popular political figure, has a few different interpretations. For one thing, Clinton wasn’t president during the Facebook era, and so he would already be lagging behind someone who was.

But the solid fan base could also show that American’s opinion of the second Bush presidency is changing, as noted in 2010. And his Facebook page could only help those efforts to soften his image. Very few places on Bush’s Facebook page address the key figures or events of his presidency (aside from a note about the death of Osama Bin Ladin and photos from a Sept. 11 memorial).

For the most part, Bush’s profile focuses on his humanitarian work. It’s a similar move to what Jimmy Carter did when he left office—except with Facebook to document the results.

Photo via George W. Bush/Facebook

Layer 8
President Obama goes the distance with new documentary on YouTube
The 17-minute documentary, "The Road We Traveled,"  has already been viewed 1.5 million times. 
From Our VICE Partners

Pure, uncut internet. Straight to your inbox.