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Letter Accepting the Resignation of David A. Stockman as Director of the Office of Management and Budget

July 31, 1985

Dear Dave:

It is with regret and a high regard for your accomplishments that I accept your resignation as Director of the Office of Management and Budget.

Not many people, even here in Washington, could name our Nation's Budget Directors for the past twenty years. But just about everyone knows who has held that post for the past four and a half years. Your analytical intelligence and obvious devotion to the public interest quickly made you one of my most important advisers. The fresh approach you brought to budget issues, and your courage in confronting long-established special interests, earned you the respect even of those who opposed us in specific areas. Most importantly, you have shown that it is possible to reduce Federal spending without sacrificing vital human services.

Sometimes, in dealing with an issue as important and multi-faceted as the preparation of the Federal Budget, it is easy to become discouraged by the sheer magnitude of the task and to wonder if you are really making any progress. But the public tributes coming your way from every quarter are proof that you have indeed made a difference. Future OMB Directors will be measured against the standard of your performance, and they will find it a hard standard to match. I want to thank you personally for a job well done.

Nancy joins me in sending you and Jennifer and your daughter Rachel our best wishes for every future happiness.



[The Honorable David A. Stockman, Director, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, D.C. 20503]

Dear Mr. President:

A sad day has arrived for me—the day I leave service in your Administration and embark on a new career and challenge.

I do so with heartfelt gratitude for the opportunity you have given me to participate in an historic and momentous venture. You set out to change the course of American history and to steer the nation back to its true strength, prosperity and greatness. You have succeeded to a remarkable degree and with permanent effect. Even though difficult problems still lie ahead, our nation's direction and goals are clear once again.

I will always be proud of whatever contributions I have made along the way. More importantly, I will always cherish the kindness, consideration and patience you afforded me—sometimes under very trying circumstances. Changing decades' old habits and policies has necessarily given rise to contention and disagreements among all of us entrusted with the responsibilities of governance. But your unfailing grace, spirit and goodwill have made all those debates and battles more pleasant, rewarding and memorable than you can possibly appreciate.

As you know, Jennifer and I are now the parents of a three-month old daughter. Just as Rachel is the pride of our lives, I know that someday the pride of her's will be that her father was privileged to serve President Ronald Reagan. With your leadership America was put on a new path that will mean a bright and hopeful future for her and millions of her fellow citizens. For this, we will always be grateful.

Mr. President, you have my abiding respect as I leave and my best wishes as you continue with the challenges ahead.

With my deepest regard,


[The President, The White House, Washington, DC 20500]

Ronald Reagan, Letter Accepting the Resignation of David A. Stockman as Director of the Office of Management and Budget Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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