Secretary of Defense Ash Carter sends memo to staff demanding peaceful transition of power

U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter.
(Image credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

One of the most special things about American democracy is the peaceful handover of power, a tradition that President Obama's appointed Secretary of Defense Ash Carter has urged his staff to protect in an increasingly divided country. "Last night our fellow American citizens voted for a new president," Carter wrote in a memo to Department of Defense staff. "That it happened freely and peacefully is a testament to the great work of this department."

Carter added, "I am committed to overseeing the orderly transition to the next commander in chief. I know I can count on you to execute all your duties with the excellence our citizens know they can expect."

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