Source: U.S. Navy (Public Domain)
Source: U.S. Navy (Public Domain)
Former Presidents George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush
Source: U.S. Navy (Public Domain)

Yesteray, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) introduced the Presidential Allowance Modernization Act of 2015, legislation to reform the system for providing former U.S. presidents certain benefits and perks.  Original co-sponsors of the bill include U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Marco Rubio (R-FL). This is the companion bill to the House of Representatives bill, H.R. 1777, introduced by Congressmen Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) and Elijah Cummings (D-MD).

Currently, legislation known as the Former Presidents Act provides former presidents with an annual pension and a series of benefits that taxpayers pick up the tab for. These perks include, but are not limited to communications, office space, staff, and travel expenses.  In fiscal year 2015, former U.S. presidents cost taxpayers more than $2.4 million in travel, office space, communications, personnel, and other expenses.

The Presidential Allowance Modernization Act examines how former presidents are spending taxpayer dollars and would set the annual allowances for former presidents at $200,000. The legislation would then reduce the amount of perks available dollar-for-dollar for annual income over $400,000 generated by former presidents the previous year.

“Taxpayers should not be on the hook for subsidizing former presidents’ lives to the tune of millions of dollars,” Ernst said. “Although this is a narrow item, this is an issue of restoring taxpayer trust by looking at reforms in the allowances and perks given to these former presidents who generate significant incomes after leaving office. At a time when we are more than $18 trillion in debt, it is critical that we stop talking and start cutting wasteful spending.”

“As Americans, we are grateful for the service of former presidents and have seen how many of them can go on to lead active and impactful careers once they’ve left office,” Rubio added. “But taxpayers no longer need to foot the entire bill for all the endeavors presidents undertake after leaving office, which is why I support Joni Ernst’s effort to reform the benefits afforded to former presidents.”

“Last year, Presidents Clinton and Bush collected $2.2 million from taxpayers. I believe the majority of Americans would prefer to keep that money in the treasury,” Kirk stated.

You May Also Like

Rick Santorum Suspends Campaign

Rick Santorum, former PA senator and Republican Presidential candidate just announced that he…

Ted Cruz: “The First Amendment is not about opinions you agree with.”

U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX): “The First Amendment is about opinions that you passionately disagree with and the right of others to express them.”

The Pentagon’s Geoff Morrell to WikiLeaks: “We Demand, I Mean Ask Them to Do The Right Thing”

This was more painful to watch yesterday than it was to read. …

Rick Santorum and Criticism from the Faux Right and the Hard Left

The guns are turning on Rick Santorum now that he is the…