President Joe Biden plans to keep a letter that former President Donald Trump left for him at the White House on Inauguration Day private, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday, the New York Post reported.
Trump did not attend Biden’s inauguration and contends that voter fraud caused his election loss to Biden, but he kept the tradition of leaving a letter for the incoming president that was started by former President Ronald Reagan in 1989.
In the White House briefing room on Friday, reporters asked Psaki about the contents of the letter, but she reiterated Biden’s intention to keep it private.
Biden and Trump
“There are no calls to report on and I don’t have any update on the letter,” Psaki said.
“As I said, when we were talking about this about a week and a half ago, it seems longer than that, I’m going to acknowledge, the president of course thought the letter was gracious and generous, but he plans to keep it private,” she said.
Psaki said there were no plans to contact Trump and that the two had not spoken since the inauguration.
Biden called the letter “generous” when he spoke about it just after the inauguration. “The president wrote a very generous letter. Because it was private, I will — won’t talk about it until I talk to him. But it was generous,” Biden told reporters.
A letter purporting to be from Trump to Biden appeared on social media, and said, “Joe, you know I won,” but the letter was shown to be a fake.
Trump praised Obama letter
Trump was the recipient of a letter from former President Barack Obama after taking office in 2017. At the time, Trump said that Obama had written congratulations “on a remarkable run.”
It also said, “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,” according to The Washington Post.
At the time, Trump praised the letter, calling it “beautiful” and saying he would “cherish” it. He also called Obama to thank him for his sentiments.
“It was long. It was complex. It was thoughtful,” Trump told ABC News a week after his inauguration. “And it took time to do it, and I appreciated it.”