Will They Respond?
Have you wondered which of the presidents of the United States will respond to a birthday greetings request? Check out our comments from readers and other facts on who responds.
I read your Suddenly Senior article concerning presidential birthday greetings in December of 2005. I wrote President Bush, and former Presidents Carter and Clinton. Additionally, I wrote our Governor Jeb Bush and the mayors of Orlando, Orange County, and Winter Park, Florida, respectively.
I wrote requesting greetings for my beloved aunt, Annabelle Woodard, who will be 100 on March 4, 2006. The response was immediate from President Carter, as well as from Governor Bush in addition to Mayor Rick Crotty of Orange County and Mayor Buddy Dyer of Orlando. My aunt, however, has yet to hear from President Bill Clinton, and I’m so disappointed.
My aunt’s birthday is only two weeks away. I sent my first letter to President Clinton in December, faxed him in January, and sent a second letter by mail, as well.
Alas, woe is me. I’m fresh out of ideas. Should I have contacted Hillary, instead? What’s a loving niece to do when they don’t respond?
Anita Frankcene Favors-Daniels
Presidential Greetings Respond FAQs
Here’s a list of commonly asked questions when requesting a greeting from our presidents.
Does the president call on your 100th birthday?
The short answer is no. But you can request a “turning 100 years old letter from the president” or other greeting cards for special occasions (e.g. a presidential birth announcement) from presidents.
How to request a congratulatory letter from the president?
Check out our article Get Presidential Greetings from Presidents for more information.
White House Late on Greetings
Cox News Service – March 15, 2004
WASHINGTON – Despite your pleadings, President Bush hasn’t written “Happy Birthday” to your 100-year-old grandpa? Even though you asked politely and promptly, your baby’s birth was not acknowledged by the White House?
Blame Osama bin Laden.
Even the mannerly tradition of presidential tidings from the White House has been frustrated by threats of terrorism.
Since the Sept 11 attacks, and subsequent mailings of anthrax-laced letters to government offices, even routine White House mail has been routed to off-site locations to be screened and irradiated. The precautions apply to the thousands of greeting requests for baby announcements, 50th wedding anniversaries, 100th birthdays, and other such greetings that are sent to every president
The result has been a backlog of Americans awaiting a congratulatory note from President Bush.
A handler in the White House Greetings Office said proud parents might have to wait six to eight months after their baby is born to receive the customary presidential announcement. In some cases, she cautioned, the baby might celebrate a first birthday before the note arrives. She had seen 17 crates of backed-up baby announcements carried into the office as workers struggled to catch up.
Last month, South Bend (Ind.) Tribune columnist Carol Elliott wrote about a woman’s request for a 100th birthday greeting for her grandmother.
‘We never received the card,’ the grieving woman even though she sent in the request with the wrote, e required lead-time of six to eight weeks. Her grandmother turned 100 and died the next month, never receiving the card. With the columnist’s help, the White House promised to send the tardy card to the granddaughter as a memento.
The best way to have a request handled in a timely manner is to fax it to (202) 395-1232, said Taylor Gross of the White House.
He would not say how many requests the Greetings Office sends out in a year, only that it accommodates as many as it can handle.
The Greetings Office employee said an Internet spam filter on the computer system has caused some email delays.
For American citizens, the White House sends out greetings to newborns, couples celebrating their 50th and subsequent wedding anniversaries, birthday wishes to folks 80 and older, wedding congratulations, Eagle Scout Awards, Girl Scout Gold Awards, and bar/bat mitzvah or equivalent occasions.
Greetings Respond: Reader Comments
I’ve saved your column on birthday greetings in “my favorites” on my computer. I just wanted to relate that Pres. Bush DID send a card to my Dad on his 80th (Sept. 10, 2004), and I will request one for my Mom’s 80th (Sept. 20, 2006).
Tell your readers they can ALSO request cards from their state governor (Dad got one from Pennsylvania’s Ed Rendell), their Senator, Congresspersons, and their state reps. If they live in a large city, they may get one from the mayor, too.
By the way…… My grandma was tickled pink when, while in office, Clinton’s CAT, Socks, sent her a postcard of himself with the White House in the background!
My wife and I celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary in August of 2004. Our #3 son and his wife had sent the information to the white house and we received our greetings from President Bush in a very timely manner.