According to a recent Fox News Business report, former President Barack Obama will receive more than $400,000 from finance firm Cantor Fitzgerald for serving as the keynote speaker for the company’s September healthcare conference.
As The Hill’s reporting points out, that figure is almost double what former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made when she spoke to Wall Street (something she repeatedly took shit from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) for during the 2016 primary). You could argue that Obama’s speech is less objectionable, since he’s taking the money only after serving as president, but the truth is that the invitation alone, and the acceptance, is an indication of his cozy relationship with the finance industry spanning the eight years of his presidency. It’s also an indication of the larger corruption pervading the Democratic party, which has repeatedly failed to prosecute or hold accountable the leading figures responsible for the economic crisis of 2007-08.
Part of the terms of the agreement dictate that President Obama can get out of the speaking engagement if scheduling conflicts and concerns come up, or perhaps if he also starts taking shit for giving a speech.
The news comes a day after the 44th President made his first foray into public speaking since the inauguration of President Donald Trump.
At the University of Chicago, the former president struck a note similar to his farewell address, in which he expressed an optimism for civic participation. It’s doubtful that’s what he would be talking about before a bunch of healthcare execs, but anything’s possible in politics circa 2017.
Finally, here’s some irony for you: