Obama will give up portion of his salary
April 3rd, 2013
03:14 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama will give up portion of his salary

(CNN) - President Barack Obama will put 5% of his paycheck back into the federal government's coffers in a show of unity with furloughed federal workers, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Wednesday.

Obama, whose $400,000 annual salary is set in law and can't officially be changed, will write a check made out to the U.S. treasury every month beginning in April. Since the mandatory across-the-board spending cuts went into effect March 1, his payment for last month will be paid retroactively.

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"The President has decided that to share in the sacrifice being made by public servants across the federal government that are affected by the sequester, he will contribute a portion of his salary back to the Treasury," Carney said in a statement. "He instructed his staff he wanted to do this when the sequester took effect."

On Tuesday, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced he was giving up the portion of his salary that would have been cut if he had been subject to the same work furlough as thousands of department personnel under the mandatory federal budget cuts. Hagel, who earns $199,700 annually, will write a check to the Treasury for up to 14 days of salary, according to Pentagon press secretary George Little.

As a Cabinet official confirmed by the Senate, Hagel is not subject to the furlough. But Little said Hagel decided to give the equivalent of his furloughed pay to show his support for his workforce. Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter had already announced he was doing the same thing in the weeks before Hagel was confirmed.

On Monday, Carney announced that nearly 500 furlough notices have gone out to administration employees in reaction to the forced government spending cuts known as sequestration.

"The White House is one of eleven components of the Executive Office of the President which is indeed, as we have said, subject to the sequester," Carney said. "Within the Executive Office of the President, several offices have sent furlough notices to their staff, including to 480 employees of the Office of Management and Budget."

According to estimates released when the budget cuts went into effect on March 1, OMB must cut $7 million from the $89 million remaining in its annual budget. Other departments within the EOP have thus far been successful in reducing spending in ways that have avoided the need for furloughs, Carney said, but "additional furloughs as well as pay cuts remain possibilities for additional White House employees."

Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (433 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I'm still waiting for Trump to cut his check to the Treasury. Here's the address Donald: 1500 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC 20220

    April 3, 2013 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  2. hornetbut

    peanuts..obama is rich and will be super rich when he gets out of office..big deal ..all for show,,

    April 3, 2013 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  3. just sayin

    won't even cover 1% of what all his vacations cost us.... next joke.

    April 3, 2013 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  4. Wake up People!

    Oh boy I can't wait to hear the hatred coming from the RWNJ's about this.......

    April 3, 2013 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  5. lovespandas

    Well, Dutch, I'm still waiting for Buffett to pay up too!

    April 3, 2013 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  6. Ed

    Obama, why not cut out some taxpayer vacations too? That would save a hell of a lot more than your 5% "gift"!

    April 3, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  7. tayllor1234

    5% or what it costs the US taxpayer for the first hour of one of his monthly vacations, whichever comes first.

    April 3, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  8. sonicmojo

    I will give up 5% of my unemployment check to show my good faith.

    April 3, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  9. Kman66

    This Fraudster is the Master of Manipulation

    April 3, 2013 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  10. SALLY

    5% of $400,000 is $20,000, not $1700. wise up.

    April 3, 2013 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  11. tribepride

    what about 5% of his multimillion dollar book deal and speaking fees after he leaves office?

    April 3, 2013 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  12. Matt

    Wow.. I'd rather he and his entire family would just stop going on 6 figure vacations with their friends.. that would surely help more. No Obama, you can't donate $1700 a month and make everyone forget how much of OUR hard earned money you and your family WASTE!

    April 3, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  13. Joe

    Haven't see any Republicans in Congress do such a thing. Of course, taking from the little guy is OK as long as it doesn't affect those on top.

    April 3, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  14. Chris

    Department of Defense workers will lose one day (8 hours) every week from mid April until October 1. That is a 10% cut – what's with the 5%? The Commander in Chief should hold himself to the same standard as the most severely hit federal worker, or just say he's not subject to the cut.

    April 3, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  15. yeahright

    Oh please, this is nothing and is all for show. Obama went on a golf trip with Tiger Woods last months that cost US $1 million. I hope people don't buy this pathetic attempt to make us believe Obama is feeling any pain from his own sequester.

    April 3, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  16. Shawn

    How much are you giving up hornetbut? You need your hornetbut kicked and I'd be happy to do it.

    April 3, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  17. Don

    Your turn Boener

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  18. Chris

    Sorry – meant to say it is a 20% cut, which makes Obama's 5% seem a bit paltry. . . .

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  19. bob

    Instead of 5% of your check.. why don’t you pay 5% of your expense.. that we have to pay ..

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  20. Jerry

    How about 20% over the next six months like everyone else who is being furloughed

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  21. smanaher

    How about cutting it down to what the average US worker makes on minimum wage? That would be news.

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  22. Secretary

    "That amounts to roughly $1,700 per month"

    Peanuts. Simply peanuts.
    That man earns so much and he is barely giving back anything. If he wanted to make a difference, he should get Senators, Congressmen and Congresswomen, To give back too. Their bloated paychecks should be slashed the hardest.

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  23. Ben

    Of course its just a symbolic gesture. But if he didn't do it, you'd have the Faux News crowd slamming his decadent lifestyle while Federal workers suffer.

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  24. sonny chapman

    How long will it take for a Repub. to find fault w/this ? At 3:22 hornetbutt obliged. These folks would find fault in how Obama kisses his daughters Good Night.

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  25. noteasilyswayed

    Let's see how many Congress members follow suit and share in the "pain".

    April 3, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
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