Yesterday, my wife posed an interesting question - Have we really seen the last of him in January, or could Barack Obama run for the Senate?
I'm embarrassed to admit that I honestly didn't know.
I did know that he was prohibited by the 22nd Amendment from running for President (or Vice President), but had no idea about any other public office.
Thanks to Google, I can now report that he not only could run for public office, but it's been done before.
John Quincy Adams, our 6th President, left office in 1829, but returned to Washington as a Representative from his home state of Massachusetts serving from 1831 to 1848.
Number 17, Andrew Johnson left the Presidency in 1869 but became a US Senator from Tennessee in 1875.
And number 27, William Howard Taft, left office in 1913. Eight years later Taft became the 10th Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court.
If Obama just stays home and does nothing, he will receive a pension of over $200 thousand and thousands more in perks. Last year, we gave George W Bush over a million including $434 thousand for office space.
I think Harry Truman had the best idea. Retiring long before there were such things as presidential pensions - he got an Army pension of 116 dollars and change - Truman had numerous opportunities to leverage his position as a former president, but unlike those who followed him, he refused them all and said, "I could never lend myself to any transaction, however respectable, that would commercialize on the prestige and dignity of the office of the presidency."