Background: Transition Period

An orderly and peaceful transition of power between the sitting president and the president-elect is a hallmark of a functioning democracy. Since President George Washington peacefully transferred power to President John Adams, American presidents have handed over the keys to the machinery of government to their successors. This process allows for disappointed supporters of the losing candidate to accept the results of the election and for the next administration to begin preparations for governing. A peaceful transition is necessary for the stability of the country, national security, effective governing, and safeguarding of U.S. interests. Read the memo here.