History

When politics had grace: 1993 letter from George H.W. Bush to Bill Clinton goes viral

In the wake of Wednesday night’s third and final presidential debate, a 1993 letter to Bill Clinton from George H.W. Bush on his last day in office is getting some attention.

In the letter, Bush wished Clinton well as he was to become the newest resident of the White House.

The letter is noteworthy considering current GOP nominee Donald Trump‘s refusal to say whether or not he’ll accept the results of the 2016 election if he loses to Hillary Clinton. Trump’s stance has the media and political operatives in an uproar.

The letter was written after Clinton defeated Bush in the ’92 election. He welcomed the incoming President Clinton with “great happiness” and referred to him as “our president” — a stark contrast from Trump’s rhetoric.

Below is the letter in its entirety:

January 20, 1993

Dear Bill,

When I walked into this office just now I felt the same sense of wonder and respect that I felt four years ago. I know you will feel that too.

I wish you great happiness here. I never felt the loneliness some Presidents have described.

There will be very tough times, made even more difficult by criticism you may not think is fair. I’m not a very good one to give advice; but just don’t let the critics discourage you or push you off course.

You will be our President when you read this note. I wish you well. I wish your family well.

Your success now is our country’s success. I am rooting hard for you.

Good luck –

George

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