Ellen DeGeneres Delivers Touching Tribute to President Obama: “I Am a Legally Married Woman Because of Him”

Obama EllenUS President Barack Obama presents actress and comedian Ellen DeGeneres with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, during a ceremony honoring 21 recipients, in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC, November 22, 2016. / AFP / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Real life impact. Comedian Ellen DeGeneres delivered a touching tribute to President Barack Obama on his final day in office on Thursday, January 19, and thanked him for legalizing same-sex marriage during his tenure.

DeGeneres kicked off the segment by noting the Commander in Chief’s accomplishments during his past two terms—and how it’s directly impacted her life.

“I want to personally thank him for changing my life,” she said. “I am a legally married woman because of him and so is my wife [Portia de Rossi]. His courage and compassion created equality for everyone. He moved us forward and made more happen in the past eight years than I ever dreamed possible. I love him. I love Michelle.”

She then played a montage of moments of herself interacting with the first couple. “Thank you for everything President Obama and First Lady Michelle,” she shared with fans. “We will miss you so much.”

DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi wed in 2008, and the two now live in Los Angeles with their cats and dogs (they have three each). “Our priorities are each other too,” the Finding Dory star told People in 2016. “If we had kids, then I’m sure they would be, but we are. And that’s important.”

Even after nearly 20 years of marriage, the two continue to appreciate and value their love. “Portia and I constantly say to each other, ‘We are so lucky.’ Sometimes it’s lying in bed at night before I go to sleep, and I just say thank you to whatever, whoever is out there,” DeGeneres expressed in the same interview. “I’ve gotten to a place where I really am just settled. Really. I know that I’m not going anywhere. She’s not going anywhere. I’m not saying the relationship took a while; I’m saying in my life, it took a while to find this.”

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About the Author

Esther Lee
Esther Lee
Esther is the Senior News Editor at The Knot. A self-proclaimed pop culture enthusiast, she appreciates a good celebrity interview just as much as she adores Nancy Meyers movies. You can find her kicking off her mornings with barre and a green juice, traveling and exploring new cultures, and rapidly scrolling her feed for the latest and greatest news. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @theestherlee.