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The First U.S. Congress voted to pay George Washington a salary of $25,000 a year (about $531,000 in 2005 terms) ? a significant sum in 1789. Washington, already a wealthy man, refused to accept his salary. Theodore Roosevelt spent his entire $50,000 salary on entertaining guests at the White House. (Morris: The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt) Similarly, John F. Kennedy donated his salary to charities.
Traditionally, the president is the highest-paid government employee. Consequently, the president's salary serves as a traditional cap for all other federal officials, such as the Chief Justice. A raise for 2001 was approved by Congress and President Bill Clinton in 1999 because other officials who receive annual cost-of-living increases had salaries approaching the president's. Consequently, to raise the salaries of the other federal employees, the president's salary had to be raised as well. The President's monetary compensation is minuscule in comparison to the CEOs of most Fortune 500 companies and comparable to that of certain kinds of professionals e.g. attorneys and physicians in some parts of the United States. Overall the vast majority of U.S. presidents were very affluent upon entering office and thus were not dependent on the salary.
he made around 17000