President William Matthews sat where American presidents have always sat -- his back to the south wall of the room, facing northward across a wide antique desk toward the classical marble fireplace that dominates the north wall. His chair, unlike that of most of his predecessors, who had favored personalized, made-to-measure seating, was a factory-made, high-backed swivel chair of the kind any senior corporate executive might have. For “Bill” Matthews, as he insisted his publicity posters call him, had always through his successive and successful election campaigns stressed his ordinary, down-home personal tastes in clothing, food, and creature comforts. The chair, therefore, which could be seen by the scores of delegates he liked to welcome personally into the Oval Office, was not luxurious. The fine antique desk, he was at pains to point out, he had inherited, and it had become part of the precious tradition of the White House. That went down well. But there Bill Matthews drew the line.
When he was in conclave with his senior advisers, the “Bill” that his humblest constituent could call him to his face became the formal “Mr. President.” He also dropped the nice-guy tone of voice and the rumpled bird-doggrin that had originally gulled the voters
Into putting the boy-next-door into the White House. He was not the boy-next-door, and his advisers knew it; he was the man at the top.
See Frederick Forsyth, The Devil’s Alternative, for more details.