What happens when you send the same letter to the living ex-Presidents? Don’t answer. I can’t actually hear you.
After Ronald Reagan died in June 2004, I read that he used to answer a lot of his mail personally and was known to write long letters to people who wrote to him. This gave me an idea. What would happen if I wrote an identical (fawning) letter to the living ex-presidents. Would they reply? Would it be a form letter? A signature stamp?
On June 14, 2004, I sent letters to presidents Ford, Carter, Bush and Clinton. The letters praised each leader for his wisdom and I thanked each for everything he had done in public life.
President Jimmy Carter
On July 30, 2004, I got a letter in the mail from the Carter Center in Atlanta. Well, actually, I got back my own letter with some writing at the top. The handwriting appears to be that of Jimmy Carter. It also appears to be written with a pen. Heck, he even wrote my name!
President Bill Clinton
On July 30, 2004, I got a letter from former President Bill Clinton. This letter came only days after the Carter note, so I suspect that Carter must have put the heat on Clinton.
This one looks like a standard “thanks-for-the-positive-comments” letter. And it doesn’t look like former President Clinton signed it himself. But it’s better than nothing.