With Obama’s $400K Speech, Chaffetz To Revive Bill Curbing Presidents’ Pensions

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

House Oversight Chair Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) on Wednesday said that he will re-introduce a bill vetoed by President Barack Obama that would impose limits on presidential pensions now that Obama has reportedly accepted $400,000 for a speech.

“The Obama hypocrisy on this issue is revealing,” Chaffetz told USA Today. “His veto was very self-serving.”

He later tweeted USA Today’s headline, which reads, “Obama’s $400,000 speech could prompt Congress to go after his pension,” with the phrase “Yes, it will.”

The bill, which was sponsored by Chaffetz last year, would cap presidents’ pensions at $200,000 with an additional $200,000 for expenses like paying staff. With the bill, titled the Presidential Allowance Modernization Act, the president’s pension would see cuts when the president’s income exceeds $400,000.

Congress passed the bill last year with support from both parties, but Obama vetoed it, citing concerns that the legislation would immediately cut off the salaries of former presidents’ staffers without a transition period.

Rep. Elijah Cummings’ (D-MD) office on Wednesday indicated that he would be open to reviving the legislation with some tweaks.

“Cummings definitely supports the concept, and if we can work out the technical issues with the bill that arose late in the last Congress, we expect he would strongly support it again,” Cummings spokeswoman Jennifer Hoffman told USA Today.

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