The “Long” And “Complex” Letter President Obama Gave To President Trump
President Obama’s Letter to incoming President Donald Trump in January 2017
Dear Mr. President -
Congratulations on a remarkable run. Millions have placed their hopes in you, and all of us, regardless of party, should hope for expanded prosperity and security during your tenure.
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. Still, let me offer a few reflections from the past 8 years.
First, we’ve both been blessed, in different ways, with great good fortune. Not everyone is so lucky. It’s up to us to do everything we can (to) build more ladders of success for every child and family that’s willing to work hard.
Second, American leadership in this world really is indispensable. It’s up to us, through action and example, to sustain the international order that’s expanded steadily since the end of the Cold War, and upon which our own wealth and safety depend.
Third, we are just temporary occupants of this office. 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. Regardless of the push and pull of daily politics, it’s up to us to leave those instruments of our democracy at least as strong as we found them.
And finally, take time, in the rush of events and responsibilities, for friends and family. They’ll get you through the inevitable rough patches.
Michelle and I wish you and Melania the very best as you embark on this great adventure, and know that we stand ready to help in any ways which we can.
Good luck and Godspeed,
President Trump’s response…
“I just went to the Oval Office and found this beautiful letter from President Obama.”
“This was the letter given to me by President Obama. I won’t show to you or read it to you, but a — just a, a beautiful letter,”
“It was long, it was complex, it was thoughtful, and it took time to do it,”
“It was really very nice of him to do that and we will cherish that. We will keep that and we won’t even tell the press what’s in that letter.”
“Nothing that surprised me, but it was stated beautifully but that I’m representing a lot of people and I’m carrying on a very important tradition, and just do a great job. He wants me to do a great job.”
These kind words, coming from the same man that Trump alleges wiretapped his offices in Trump Tower. According to Microsoft Word, the letter is 1 page long, contains 277 words, 10 paragraphs, and consists of 21 lines containing 15 complete sentences. By the way, I still don’t think Trump fully read, as in comprehended — as much, the letter.
The competitive card-carrying tribesman in Rick Santorum, who more accurately called it a note spoke with unabashed ambivalence as if to expect more than just a congratulation on his victory. Santorum expected more. This is not surprising at all as most patriarchal (mostly white men) in groups expect more from everybody when it comes to acknowledgement, or better yet for the marginalized to kiss their ass. Owe it to that noxious air of superiority (laughing gas) emitted in doses that seemingly offends the rest of us with a laughable side effect — dizzying in toxicity, from which many have apparently developed a dysfunctional dependency.
The letter was given in January of 2017 and besides losing the popular vote by nearly 3 million, Trump has accomplished very little then (at that moment and time) and even now outside of the electoral college vote. A vote that disproportionately applies influential voting power to less populous states whose constituency is not surprisingly, but overwhelmingly represented by white rural mid-western voters. This is what makes the electoral college vote flawed and counterintuitive. It does not reflect a plural majority of Americans.
But again the idiocy of Santorum and the like are distracting. What I wanted to conclude is the squandered opportunity for fairness. Fairness with the way we live as Americans together not in distant enclaves, or segregated by community or class. Fair in the pursuit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness with how we address our economy — wages and jobs. Fairness in addressing our foreign policy with our global neighbors. Fairness with how address our domestic policy from immigration to taxes and healthcare reform. Nothing has been accomplished by our president thus far because all he proposes and puts forth is simply unfair.
Just as Trump unfairly characterizes President Obama with contradiction and inconsistency by undoing the popular and electoral college vote and will of the Obama presidency, he unfairly and deceptively rabble rouses divisiveness in his incantations to the public by sowing the (dog whistle) seeds with an undemocratic approach.
Once again and disappointingly, I can’t believe that President Trump whose dismal job disapproval rating hovers now just below a not high enough 60% , has an approval rating of 36% which is obviously not low enough — the absurd perpetual benefit of the doubt granted — in my opinion.
President Trump, I know you didn’t really read that letter. You skimmed through it.