Obama’s Salary 'Sacrifice' Is Patronizing

Dana Milbank: A $20K cut is nothing for a man worth millions

By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 5, 2013 12:59 PM CDT

(Newser) – Obama's decision to give 5% of his salary back to the Treasury to match sequester cuts to government agencies is hardly the "sacrifice" it's getting made out to be, writes Dana Milbank in the Washington Post. Although $20,000 of his $400,000 salary is technically on par with cuts faced by federal workers, "the amount ... is so little for a man made wealthy by his political fame that it comes across as patronizing."

The Obamas reported a combined income of $8 million during the president's first three years in office, thanks to royalties from his best-selling memoirs. And that's nothing on the millions in appearance and speaking fees he'll rake in once he leaves the White House. "During World Wars I and II, there were 'dollar-a-year men' who left lucrative private-sector careers to serve their country in Washington," writes Milbank. "If Obama really wants to share in the furloughed workers’ 'sacrifice,' he should follow that honorable example and give back all but a dollar of his $400,000 salary. When he leaves office, he’ll be able to earn it back with a couple days’ work." Click for his full column.

Barack Obama paying cash at a grocery store in Webster City, Iowa, in 2007.
Barack Obama paying cash at a grocery store in Webster City, Iowa, in 2007.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, FILE)
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