George W. Bush on relationship with Michelle Obama: 'We just took to each other'

Michelle Obama and former president George W. Bush, an unlikely twosome to some, appear to have developed an affectionate relationship over the last eight years.

In a recent interview with PEOPLE, Bush said he has a genuine fondness for the former first lady.

"She kind of likes my sense of humor. Anybody who likes my sense of humor, I immediately like," says Bush.

See photos of pals Michelle Obama and George W. Bush together

Bush, 70, delved further, discussing two times he and Michelle Obama were seated next to each other at political events -- including both the memorial service held for Nancy Reagan last year and the dedication ceremony for the opening of the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture.

At both of those events, photos of the pair's interactions went viral.

"When I saw her, it was a genuine expression of affection," Bush said of the moment at the Smithsonian.

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"I can't remember where else I've sat next to her, but I probably have a few wise cracks and she seemed to like it okay," said Bush. "I needle her a little bit and around her, I'm fairly lighthearted. [The Obamas] are around serious people all the time and we just took to each other."

The bond between the former president and former first lady from two different administrations dates back to President Barack Obama's inauguration in January 2009. When Bush took the then-first lady aside to talk and meet her two daughters during the swearing-in ceremony.

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