In case you were worried about George after he leaves office, don't plan on inviting him to your home for dinner unless you have lots of cash.
Mr. Bush has been vague about his post-presidential plans. He mentioned having “a nice place in Dallas” and setting up a Freedom Institute. Otherwise, he told Mr. Draper, “I can just envision getting in the car, getting bored, going down to the ranch.”
A new book out last week reported that President Bush wants to hop on the lecture circuit when he leaves office in 2009 — “replenish the ol’ coffers,” as he put it in Robert Draper’s account of his presidency, “Dead Certain.”
“I don’t know what my dad gets,” the president told Mr. Draper. “But it’s more than 50, 75” thousand dollars a speech. He added, “Clinton’s making a lot of money.”
In the book, Mr. Bush did not really explain his interest in more money. His assets are estimated at between $8 million and $20 million (and his daughters are out of college). Moreover, since the 1950s, when it was clear that Harry Truman could not afford even an office staff, the federal government has taken care of former presidents. Mr. Bush will receive an annual pension of $186,000, travel funds, mailing privileges, Secret Service protection, office space, staff, stationery and transition expenses.
It appears that retired presidents after Harry discovered that they could make a lot of money talking to people about anything they want to for cash. Apparently, Bill is doing quite well that way and George wants to get on the bandwagon.
Just in case you were worried about George's ability to support himself.