Former President Barack Obama is hoping that Congress will approve his request for a 2018 budget that will see him pocket $1,153,000 of taxpayer funds, an amount that is six figures higher than the next highest living ex-president’s budget.
Obama’s eye-popping allowance request, if approved by Congress, would place his budget more than $100,000 higher than the one requested by George W. Bush next year, The Washington Times reported, citing a memo from the Congressional Research Office. It would also surpass George H.W. Bush’s by over $200,000 and dwarf Jimmy Carter’s relatively meager request of $456,000.
Each former president is entitled to receive an office, expenses, and potentially an annual pension payment under a law enacted in the 1950s after former President Harry S. Truman reportedly went broke after leaving the White House in 1953.
Since the time of Truman’s presidency, ex-commanders in chief have largely parlayed their leadership role into financial success post-presidency, but the generous allotment of taxpayer funds has been accepted by all.
The costs associated with office space have proved the most burdensome for taxpayers, with Obama’s spacious 8,198 square foot pad in Washington D.C. expected to cost $536,000 in 2018 alone. That compares to Bill Clinton’s office in New York City, which is slightly bigger but runs $518,000 per year.
Meanwhile, the younger Bush spends $497,000 per year for his office in Dallas, while his father’s office in Houston costs $286,000. Jimmy Carter spends a comparatively frugal $115,000 for his office in Atlanta.
Obama also leads the pack in pension payment with a cool $236,000, followed by Clinton with $231,000 and the younger Bush with $225,000.
In addition to the above costs, taxpayers also foot the bill for U.S. Secret Service protection for former presidents and their spouses for life, an unreported sum that is estimated to climb into the tens of millions of dollars.