Former President George H.W. Bush is the latest former United States leader to join Twitter. Bush sent out his first tweet on Tuesday afternoon, praising Nelson Mandela.
Fans of the former president flocked to his Twitter account, expressing their excitement at seeing him on the social networking service. Many sent Bush a “welcome” tweet, while others talked about fond memories they have of the 41st president. Within 12 hours, the former president gained 40,000 followers and followed eight people, mostly those with the last name of “Bush” (no surprise there!).
Here is Bush’s first tweet:
Barbara and I wish we could have joined the U.S. delegation honoring President Mandela today. He, and his countrymen, are in our prayers.
— George Bush (@GeorgeHWBush) December 10, 2013
The tweet followed an official statement released by Bush’s office on November 6, after the announcement of Nelson Mandela’s death. It read, in part, “Barbara and I mourn the passing of one of the greatest believers in freedom we have had the privilege to know.”
While George H.W. Bush has gained a good following, he is still far behind former President Bill Clinton, who took the plunge in April and gained over 1.3 million followers since. But, hey, it’s only been a day, so Bush has a chance to catch up.