On Jan. 20, 1993, as newly inaugurated President Bill Clinton read outgoing President H.W. Bush’s words — left for him inside a desk in the Oval Office — the burgeoning connection between the once-political rivals became inked on stationery beneath an embossed presidential seal.
“Dear Bill,” the letter began.
“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.