Donald Trump doubled down on his refusal in last night’s debate to accept the results of the election. Speaking in Ohio this morning, Trump rejected calls from within the Republican Party to modify his stance. Apparently, the art of being gracious in defeat is an unknown concept for Mr. Trump.
I would like to promise and pledge, to all of my voters and supporters and to all of the people of the United States, that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election — if I win. — Donald Trump
Trump pledged support in the first debate
During their first debate, Mr. Trump, when asked if he would support Hillary Clinton if she won the election gave a different response: “If she wins, I will absolutely support her.” As the campaign has become increasingly bitter over the past few weeks, Mr. Trump has made allegations of a “rigged election” a centerpiece of his campaign.
McCain rebukes Trump
Sen. John McCain, who ran and lost in his bid for the presidency in 2008, rebuked Mr. Trump after the debate.
I had a duty to concede, and I did so without reluctance. A concession isn’t just an exercise in graciousness. It is an act of respect for the will of the American people, a respect that is every American leader’s first responsibility. — Sen. John McCain
Letter from Bush to Clinton
Mr. Trump would probably do himself and the country some good if he read the letter that President George H.W. Bush left on his desk in the Oval Office for his successor, President Bill Clinton, who defeated Mr. Bush in a hard-fought election in 1992.
It has been a presidential tradition for the outgoing President to leave a personal note to his successor. Most of those exchanges have remained private between the two presidents, but the letter of the first President Bush to President Clinton was later made public and stands as an example of a kind and gracious man who put his country before his ego.