NPR logo U.S. Spent $3.7 Million On Former Presidents In 2012


U.S. Spent $3.7 Million On Former Presidents In 2012

George H. W. Bush, Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. White House hide caption

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White House

The United States spent nearly $4 million on the the pensions, travel, office space, staff of former presidents.

NPR's Cheryl Corley sent in this report for our Newscast unit:

"Taxpayers paid out nearly $3.7 million dollars for former presidents last year.

"That's about $200,000 less than in 2011. The Former President's Act of 1958 set up the funding for ex-presidents.

"Departing presidents also get extra help in the first years after they leave office. So the most costly ex-president in 2012 was George W. Bush, who received just over $1.3 million.

"Bill Clinton spent just under a million, George H.W. Bush nearly $850,000 and Jimmy Carter spent about a half-million dollars. A bill to put more limits on the costs taxpayers pick up for ex-presidents died in committee last year."

The AP reports that this information comes from a report by the Congressional Research Service.

The Former President's Act gives ex-presidents $150,000 a year. It also gives them $96,000 a year to hire a staff person.

The Act also provides the widow of any president with a $20,000 a year allowance.

There are currently four living former presidents.