Elizabeth Warren 'Troubled' by Obama's $400,000 Wall Street Speaking Fee

April 27, 2017

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) said Thursday she is "troubled" that former President Barack Obama, who has, like Warren, decried income inequality and criticized Wall Street bankers, will reportedly receive $400,000 from a Wall Street firm to speak at its health care conference.

Money in politics is like "a snake," Warren warned during an interview on Sirus XM's "Alter Family Politics" after she was asked about Obama's speaking fee.

"What do you think about President Obama accepting $400,000 from Wall Street?" Warren was asked.

"Well, I was troubled by that," the Massachusetts Democrat responded.

Warren cited several ways that money influences politics in the nation's capital, saying she and others need to "fight back" against the "rich and powerful."

Both Obama and Warren have been outspoken critics of income inequality and Wall Street. Obama blamed Wall Street bankers for the 2008 financial crisis, publicly calling for their accountability, and in 2009 referred to them as "fat cats."

But, according to a report published Monday, Obama agreed to take $400,000 to speak at a Wall Street firm's conference in September. Obama's payout would roughly double what former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, charged to speak.

The firm, Cantor Fitzgerald LP, would pay Obama for that single event the same amount presidents have received in annual salary.