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To get rich, get elected!
“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.” ~Leonardo da Vinci
I have often wondered how people that get elected to our nation’s highest offices came away with millions of dollars and a life time list of benefits while the rest of us struggle to make ends meet and are at our desks doing business long after we reach the retirement age.
Now comes a story written by Catherine Mortensen, the Vice President of Communications at Americans for Limited Government.
She writes: “After a career in government service, most federal workers walk away with a modest pension. Not Joe Biden. When he stepped into the office of vice president, CBS News reports he had a net worth of less than $30,000. Three years after leaving office, his net worth rocketed to $9 million.
“Today, Biden, who cultivated a decades long brand as ‘Middle Class Joe’ and often referred to himself as ‘one of the poorest members of Congress,’ owns not one, but two multi-million-dollar mansions in Delaware, one in Wilmington and one at Rehoboth Beach. And prior to that for many years he owned one of the DuPont family mansions.”
But, Biden is not the only one that made my list of former servants that made it into the millionaire tax bracket. Bill Clinton told us that he was broke as he was leaving the White House, but was able to buy a multi-million dollar home in New York State. Obama is also living in the lap of luxury. Richard Nixon was another President that retired without the worry of how he was going to fund his life style.
“Biden and his wife Jill’s financial disclosures in July of 2019, showed they earned more than $15 million in 2017 and 2018.” Rich Manning, president of Americans for Limited government stated; “this kind of sleazy money grab is all-too common among Washington elite, and it’s one of the reasons the American people voted for Donald Trump.”
“The bulk of Biden’s wealth comes from a multi-book deal with Flatiron Books valued at $8 million and he also earned a sizable income from speaking engagements ($40,000 to $190,000)” and a half million from the University of Pennsylvania.
But that was not always the way for retired Presidents. Harry Truman left the White House in 1953 with a monthly pension of $112.56 he received from the Army for his service in and after World War I. Truman received $600,000 from Life Magazine for his writing, but it took Congress five years to realize that Truman and other retired elected offices need help. In 1958 they passed a bill giving former presidents $25,000 annual pension plus administrative support. Today that pension is at $219,200 annually.
I found a chart that was put together by the National Taxpayers Union foundation on how much taxpayer’s money was spent to support retired former presidents. These amounts are for the years of 2000 to 2017, and include benefits like office space, travel expense, health benefits, Secret Service and funeral expense including the right to be buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Gerald Ford received $5.1 million within that time frame. Jimmy Carter got $10.1 million, Ronald Reagan got 4.1 million, George H. W. bush got 15.2 million, William Clinton got 19.1 million, and George H. Bush received 10.5 million.
In 2017, George Bush spent $472,000 for office space, but Bill Clinton spent $511,000 for office space. Those two should move their offices to one of our communities and we sure could save some taxpayers money on rent.
Thanks for reading! ~Carlton