Bill Clinton Budgeted to Receive Nearly $1 Million in Taxpayer Money in 2014

Former president, who is worth more than $50 million, received $201,000 pension

Bill and Hillary Clinton / AP
June 23, 2014

An April Congressional Research Service (CRS) report shows that the Government Services Administration (GSA), which is in charge of supporting federal disbursements, budgeted $950,000 for former president Bill Clinton in the 2014 budget.

Clinton will collect a $201,000 pension in 2014, a figure four times larger than the median family income in the United States. The Clintons have received a total of $15,938,000 in federal money since 2001.

Hillary Clinton recently described the poverty her family experienced upon exiting the White House while promoting her book. They were "dead broke," Hillary said, adding that she and her husband "struggled to, you know, piece together the resources for mortgages for houses, for Chelsea’s education, you know, it was not easy."

Clinton’s pension is just a small portion of the costs the former president will incur over the next year. GSA budgeted $450,000 to pay for Clinton’s office space, the highest total of the four living presidents.

CRS noted that America has not always taken financial care of their former heads of state. Harry S. Truman, for example, died in poverty in his Missouri home after leaving the White House.

"Former U.S. Presidents have returned to varied financial circumstances after leaving office. Some former Presidents created or returned to wealthy lives after the presidency. Others struggled financially. Contemporary former Presidents—like William J. Clinton and George W. Bush—write memoirs, head foundations, and give public speeches," the report states.

The wives of former presidents also pen memoirs and give high-priced talks.

Hillary Clinton received an $8 million advance in 2000 to pen her first memoir, a point in time during which the first family was "dead broke." Clinton received $14 million to write her most recent memoir, Hard Choices. The book sold just 60,000 copies in its first week, less than half of her publisher’s initial hopes.

The former secretary of state reportedly earns $200,000 for giving one-hour speeches to the likes of Goldman Sachs and the Society of Human Resource Management; Bill pulls in $500,000 per speech.

CRS says the system must be working because "no current former President has claimed publicly to have significant financial concerns."

Clinton walked back her pleas of poverty after a public backlash. However, she told the British newspaper, the Guardian, that she and Bill are not "truly well off."

The former first family needed Virginia Governor and former DNC moneyman Terry McAuliffe to pay for their "$1.7 million, 11-room Dutch Colonial home in the wooded suburbs of Westchester County."

Emails sent to the Clinton Foundation for comment were not returned.