The White House has decided to remove portraits of former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush from its Grand Foyer, opting instead to display them in a smaller, less-visited room, Breitbart reported Saturday.
The portraits were replaced in the Grand Foyer with portraits of William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt, the 25th and 26th presidents, respectively, according to Breitbart.
The reason for the change remains unclear.
A break with tradition
According to Breitbart, the switch-up at the White House marks a break with tradition; normally, the most recent presidents are displayed in the Grand Foyer.
The Clinton and Bush portraits were moved to the Old Family Dining Room, Breitbart reported. According to Insider, that room has fallen out of use with the Trump administration and is no longer shown on public tours.
The move came after a visit from Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, Breitbart noted. However, it seems unlikely that the Mexican leader raised a problem with the display of Bush and Clinton’s portraits.
It is possible President Trump himself — no close friend of Clinton or Bush — simply grew tired of seeing them daily.
And the rest is history
The state of presidential portraits has been lively through President Trump’s first term. The commander in chief has so far refused to unveil the portrait of his predecessor, Barack Obama, and former First Lady Michelle Obama, as NBC News notes.
According to NBC, the tradition of a president “unveiling” their predecessor’s portrait dates back to “1978, when Jimmy Carter welcomed Gerald Ford back to the White House. Carter had defeated Ford just two years earlier,” NBC added.
Carter didn’t get a ceremony of his own from Ronald Reagan, however, according to NBC.
Representatives for Obama and President Trump have each declined to comment on the matter, NBC noted.
It’s hard to blame Trump for that, though. With a deadly virus spreading around the world, protests continuing to break out across the country, and an election coming up in November on which the future of the United States rests, President Trump has bigger fish to fry than a pair of lousy paintings.