“The president wrote a very generous letter,” Biden told reporters. “Because it was private, I’m not going to talk about it until I talk to him, but it was generous.”
A senior Trump adviser described the letter to CNN as a “personal note” praying for the country’s success and the new administration to take care of the country. The adjutant said writing the letter to Biden was one of the many items on Trump’s list in the Oval Office Tuesday night.
According to one person, Trump did not show many of his aides the note he left on Biden.
While it may seem surprising that Trump maintained that tradition by ignoring every other element of a peaceful surrender, this fits in with his earlier enthusiasm for the letter he received from President Barack Obama.
Trump was so excited about Obama’s letter that he tried to call him as soon as he read it on inauguration day in 2017. But Obama still flew to Palm Springs on the presidential plane and couldn’t take the call.
When one of Obama’s aide turned back to the White House to return the call, the new president’s staff said Trump just wanted to thank you for the note – and wanted Obama to get the message. The men never connected directly.
“It was long. It was complex. It was thought-provoking,” Trump said of the letter a week after he took office in an interview with ABC News. “And it took some time and I appreciated it.”
He later showed the letter to the visitors in the Oval Office.
In his farewell speech on Wednesday, Trump did not name Biden, but said he wished the “new administration the best of luck and success”.
This came after Trump lied for months that the presidential election had been rigged against him and unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about electoral fraud had been spread. He instigated a violent mob to storm the U.S. Capitol, killing five people, including a Capitol police officer. He was recently charged by the House of Representatives for his role in instigating this deadly attack on the Capitol and there will be a trial in the US Senate.
Former Vice President Mike Pence also left a letter to Vice President Kamala Harris. Pence attended Biden’s inauguration, and when he left the U.S. Capitol after the ceremony, Pence and former Second Lady Karen Pence laughed with Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff.