Government Paychecks: Bush vs. Obama

by Pearl Hahn

Many members of the public would agree that paychecks of elected officials and all public servants (otherwise known as government workers, whether at the city, state, or federal level) should be kept low to ensure that people who enter the public sector are truly motivated by a desire to serve others.

However, we often find that individuals who claim to work for the public make as much, if not more than individuals in the private sector (whose paychecks are taxed to foot those of the former).

According to this article, David Marcozzi, Obama’s director of public health policy, is one of the president’s best paid staff with a paycheck of $192,934 a year. National Security Adviser James Jones and several assistants to the president (twenty-one of them, in fact!) make $172,200 each.

To pay the president’s twenty-one assistants alone costs taxpayers $3,612,000 per year.

Obama’s staff will cost us about $5.1 million more in 2009 than the Bush administration’s staff in 2008. Despite the greater cost, Obama should be applauded for releasing more information concerning staff compensation than his predecessor.

The president himself is not the only person with personal staff. Michelle Obama’s press secretary rolls in $80,000.

Obama himself collects $400,000, while Biden collects $227,300.

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