Here’s how much the Clintons are really worth

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When Bill and Hillary Clinton left the White House in 2001, their financial standing looked grim. During a tense interview with NBC News journalist Craig Melvin in 2018, the former President claimed he didn’t get out of the Monica Lewinsky scandal “for free,” referring to his legal bills. “I left the White House $16 million in debt,” he explained.

Hillary seconded that, saying the couple were “dead broke” and in debt, when ABC News‘ Diane Sawyer asked her to defend the $5 million she made giving speeches (via Real Clear Politics).

Flash forward to 2016, and not only were the Clinton’s completely out of debt, the power couple were sitting on a whopping estimated $240 million of earnings according to Forbes. So how did they go from clipping coupons to almost a quarter of billion dollars in just 15 years?  By doing what the Clintons do best: writing books and giving speeches. A cool $189 million of that came courtesy of Bill.

Immediately after his presidency ended, Bill Clinton earned $125,000 for a speech at the multinational investment bank and financial services company, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co. This kicked off the Bill Clinton speech tour that included hundreds of stops that earned him $106 million in 15 years.

His 2004 memoir, My Life, became a national bestseller, and three books later, Clinton pocketed earned roughly $38 million just as his work as an author from 2001 to 2015. He then earned a combined $39 million by advising American businessman and billionaire Ron Burkle and doing consulting work for two for-profit education companies, Laureate Education and GMS Education.

Hillary didn’t bring much in between 2001 and 2013 since she was a United States Senator for New York and the US Secretary of State during those years. And, unless you’re doing things you shouldn’t be doing, a public servant’s salary can’t afford a private plane. But in the two years immediately following her exit from her time in the Senate and as President Barack Obama‘s Secretary of State, the Hilary Clinton raked in $9 million for speaking fees.

In 2015, while she was making her second run for President, Hillary earned a million bucks from speaking alone. In 2014, Hillary was awarded the fifth-richest book deal of all time for her second memoir, Hard Choices. According to The Guardian, sales dropped 43% in the second week and “it is believed that Simon & Schuster did not make back the advance.” 

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