There goes Obama again, bashing the Clintons:
The Clintons’ annual income easily puts them in the top 1% of Americans. But they may have reached the top 1% of the top 1%, according to publicly disclosed income data.
As we reported recently, according to their 2012 income disclosed in government forms, the Clintons made at least $16.7 million in income that year, largely from Bill Clinton‘s speeches. That total is based on income disclosed in forms that provide income ranges, and the $16.7 million total uses the minimum amount from each stated range.
The nationwide level to make the top 1% of households in 2012 was $567,719, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, a joint venture of the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute. And the level for the top 0.1% was about $2.9 million, a bar the Clintons easily surpassed.
The Tax Policy Center data stop there, at the top 0.1% — or the top 10% of the top 1% of Americans.
Did the Clintons reach the top 1% of the top 1%, based on their 2012 income? A different measure offers a strong clue. The Tax Policy Center says that IRS data for 2011, the most recent numbers available, show 11,500 total tax returns with adjusted gross income over $10 million that year, out of 145 million total returns. So a $10 million adjusted gross income puts one in the top 0.007% of all tax returns, and the Clintons’ income was well above that — likely putting it into the top 1% of the 1%.
Not bad for a couple who left office “dead broke”. Horatio Alger smiles down approvingly.
But not everyone does:
You are truly well-off by anyone’s definition of the term. And hard work is the guys tearing up my roof right now. It’s not flying by private jet to pick up a check for $200,000 to stand at a podium for an hour.
Which gets me to the second set of issues: how you’re continuing to vacuum up the money, and the aura of greediness it exudes. Madam Secretary, enough already. This behavior borders on compulsion, like refugees who once were starved and now hoard food. You’re rich beyond your wildest imaginings! You don’t need any more! Just. Stop. Speaking. For. Pay.
In the midst of a book tour (and with the ample cushion of a multimillion-dollar advance), you don’t need to be hustling for another $200,000 or so from the United Fresh Produce Association and Food Marketing Institute. On the verge of a potential presidential bid, please feel free to say yes to the University of Nevada at Las Vegas if you want to speak there. But you don’t have to hit its foundation up for a $225,000 fee, even one you plan to donate to the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation.
What an effed-up world. The Clintons should be free to part fools from their money, and fools should be free to be parted from it for the “privilege” of hearing from them. Hillary should be free to run for President, and people should be free to vote for her (or not). There is no inherent value in poverty and no vice in wealth. It is for no one else to decide when you’ve made “enough money”.
And then there’s politics, where only appearance matters. It’s easy to see how Hillary’s “inartful” language hurst her politically. But hasn’t it always? Think of her comments over the years. On Bill’s affairs, she wasn’t “some little woman standing by her man like Tammy Wynette.”
On her life in public: “I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas…”.
On Bill’s candidacy, “Elect him, you get me.”
More on Bill’s affairs: “The great story here for anybody willing to find it, write about it and explain it is this vast right-wing conspiracy that has been conspiring against my husband since the day he announced for president.”
On partisanship in politics: “I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and you disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic, and we should stand up and say, ‘We are Americans and we have a right to debate and disagree with any administration!’”
On her friends across the aisle: “I wonder if it’s possible to be a Republican and a Christian at the same time.”
On her trip to Bosnia: “I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base…. There was no greeting ceremony and we were basically told to run to our cars. That is what happened.”
On the passing of Moammar Qaddafi: “We came, we saw, he died.”
On the passing of Chris Stevens, Glen Doherty, Tyrone Woods, and Sean Smith: “What difference at this point does it make?”
It’s no wonder she’s mangled her book tour so completely. When it comes to politics, she’s deaf, dumb, and blind. And rich as Croesus, God bless her.
PS: Of course, my favorite Hillary Clinton quote is someone else’s. But it proves the same point: