Outgoing US President Donald Trump does not accept the outcome of the November election. Trump has also refused to attend Joe Biden's inauguration ceremony on January 20. It is believed that Donald Trump will thus break the tradition for outgoing presidents to leave handwritten notes for their successors when leaving the White House, wane.com reports.
The tradition began 32 years ago, in January 1989, when President Ronald Reagan left note for his successor, George H.W. Bush:
"Dear George, You'll have moments when you'll want to use this particular stationary. Well, go to it," Reagan scrawled. He noted treasuring "the memories we share" and said he'd be praying for the new president before concluding, "I'll miss our Thursday lunches. Ron," Reagan then wrote.
Since then, every president would leave a note to his successor before leaving the White House.
In 2017, Barack Obama wrote the following in his letter to Donald Trump:
"This is a unique office, without a clear blueprint for success, so I don't know that any advice from me will be particularly helpful. We are just temporary occupants of this office," he wrote. "That makes us guardians of those democratic institutions and traditions - like rule of law, separation of powers, equal protection and civil liberties - that our forebears fought and bled for. It's up to us to leave those instruments of our democracy at least as strong as we found them," Obama continued.
Donald Trump, who does not see Joe Biden as his successor and refuses to accept him as such, may break the tradition.
In the meantime, First Lady Melania Trump released her farewell video on Monday, January 18, ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden. Looking back at the "unforgettable" four years as First Lady, Melania said:
"As Donald and I conclude our time in the White House, I think of all the people I have taken home in my heart and their incredible stories of love, patriotism, and determination. [...] No words can express the depth of my gratitude for the privilege of having served as your First Lady. To all the people of this country: You will be in my heart forever," Melania Trump said in her speech.
Donald and Melania Trump will fly home before President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in before Biden's inauguration ceremony. Since the Trumps will be gone it means there will be no traditional White House reception for the Bidens. There also won't be the standard private tour of the White House living quarters by First Lady Melania Trump for Jill Biden - something like what Laura Bush did for Michelle Obama.