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From Tax Payer Treasure Hunt - Obama's Costs & Presidential Spending

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To get the ball rolling, we are giving away a free tee shirt to those who make legitimate and substantial contributions to our hunt for White House expenses! As soon as you have posted, the administrators will review your entry and then send you an email asking you to select your free tee shirt. This offer applies to posting of new content, but not to posting articles to the In the News section.
Our aim is to help ordinary citizens follow the United States federal budget. As a taxpayer, you fund the budget – you should know how your money is being spent.

Phase One: The Total Cost of the Whole White House

As the federal government’s activities varied and broad, the first section of the Federal Budget we are focusing on is the Total Cost of the Whole White House. This is a tiny portion of the federal budget, but it's an important symbolic starting point. In a democracy, accountability should include everyone – even the president.

This includes 23 different categories:
(These categories are based on the research of the Bush White House by long time White house administrator and scholar Bradley Patterson. Read more about his work)


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This site is not about ideology – various contributors may favor or oppose individual government programs.

We are about facts and numbers; where dollars are actually going.

The US government and others provide excellent general information at a high level about government spending, but we're going to go in to much more detail. (For big picture information or general overviews, visit the government sites at usaspending.gov and recovery.gov)

Think of this wiki as a treasure hunt; it's our treasure, and we're on the hunt to find out how it's actually being used.

Most Recent Treasure Finds

Expense Amount Date Modified
White House Redecoration 100000100,000 eachterm 245550030 October 2010
Special Missions (including WHCA) (2010) 149120000149,120,000 245530619 April 2010
Special Missions (including WHCA) (2009) 154693000154,693,000 245530619 April 2010
Total Commission of the White House Fellowships Cost (2010) 542058542,058 245530518 April 2010
VC-25 (Air Force One) depot maintenance induction (2011 estimated) 4430000044,300,000 245530518 April 2010
Cost of Detailees (2008) 227436227,436 245530114 April 2010
Obama's Valentine's weekend trip 246908246,908 245529912 April 2010
Total 2010 Budget for the President's Unanticipated Needs 10000001,000,000 245529912 April 2010
Cancellation of Marine One Procurement 8500000085,000,000 245529912 April 2010
Flowers 252000252,000 245529912 April 2010
View more recent treasure finds


In the news

  • -America’s Bad King
    November 5, 2012
    With Obama, an institution ripe for abuse was met by a president willing to push its boundaries. Read more at Too Conservative
  • -New Book Reveals Lavish, $1.4 BILLION Lifestyle of Obama Family
    November 2, 2012
    Attitude Media Study Says Spending Far Outstrips British Royal Family Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • -Obama's 48-hour Campaign "Extravaganza" On Air Force One
    October 26, 2012
    Battleground-state blitz concludes with dramatic arrival of Air Force One for Obama’s final stump speech of his self-described travel “extravaganza.” Read more at ABC News
  • -Spending on White House dinners soars under Obama
    October 26, 2012
    "It just kind of takes your breath away to see the expenditure of money that has occurred since 2009 ..." Read more at The Washington Examiner
  • -Obama Trip to Jay Leno Show to Cost Taxpayers Over $1M
    October 24, 2012
    President Obama is about to make the third visit of his presidency to the Jay Leno show, and according to a newly released book, it will cost US taxpayers over $1 million. Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • -New Study Says Obama Marginal Tax Rate Less Than 1%
    October 23, 2012
    The Obamas pay less than 1% in taxes when their income is calculated to include what would be taxable benefits for other citizens. Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • -Who Pays a Higher Tax Rate, Obama or Romney?
    October 16, 2012
    The Obamas pay less than 1% in taxes when their income is calculated to include what would be taxable benefits for other citizens. Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • -Is the U.S. President Worth $1.4 Billion a Year?
    October 15, 2012
    The nation is broke because of greed and entitlements. And those entitlements seem to abound in the office of the President. Read more at Godfather Politics
  • -Jack Abramoff: "This is something that every voter needs to learn about"
    October 15, 2012
    Radio host says The 1.4 Billion Dollar Man is "an astonishing set of information." Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • -John F. Groom Discusses The 1.4 Billion Dollar Man on "Through The Mirror" Radio Show
    October 11, 2012
    Host Kevin DuJan called The 1.4 Billion Dollar Man “one of the most detailed and well-researched books that I have read in quite some time” yesterday during his one-hour radio interview with author John F. Groom. Read more at White House Expenses.com
  • View older news

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Hunt Down These Expenses!



You can use some of the links on our Resources page to help you.

Recommended Resource

  • Much of our initial research has been based on 'The Cost of the Whole White House' chapter from the book To Serve The President: Continuity and Innovation in the White House Staff. This chapter contains critical research on the Bush White House by long time White House administrator and scholar Bradley Patterson
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