George W. Bush Is Our Costliest Former President

Worth every penny.

If Michele Bachmann got worked up about President Obama’s life of excess, she’s really going hit the roof once she hears what we’re paying for presidents who aren’t even in office. According to a report by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, in 2012 the government spent nearly $3.7 million on George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, and Jimmy Carter. That figure includes their $200,000 annual pension, compensation and benefits for a small staff, and funds for travel, office space, and postage. (The amount spent on Secret Service protection is not made public.) George W. Bush is costing taxpayers the most at $1.3 million, partially because presidents get more assistance for their first five years out of office. Of course, that’s nothing considering that the federal government spends trillions every year, and taxpayers are certainly being rewarded for enabling the younger Bush to pursue his passion for painting dogs.