Candidates on Charity

Today Drew posted the following excerpt from the McCain website at his place:
“For 2007, the Palins paid $24,738 (LINE 63) in total taxes on gross income of $166,080 (LINE 37), which is a 14.9% tax rate…In 2007, Sarah and Todd Palin donated $2,500 to charity in cash/check donations and $825 in non-cash/check donations, for a total of $3,325. This is 1.5% of their adjusted gross income.”
It got me wondering if there are any tithers running for the presidency or vice-presidency this year. Here is what I found:
In 2006, John and Cindy McCain had a combined adjusted gross income of $6,405,240 and donated $129,390 to charity. This is 2% of their adjusted gross income. (I used 2006 figures because Cindy McCain figures for 2007 were not posted)

In 2007, Joe and Jill Biden had a combined adjusted gross income of $319,853 and donated $995 to charity. This is .31% of their adjusted gross income.

In 2007, Barack and Michelle Obama had a combined adjusted gross income of $4,139,965 and donated $240,370 to charity. This is 5.8% of their adjusted gross income.
Not sure that I care to comment further on the figures.. I think that they speak for themselves and communicate where the candidates stand on charity.


  1. Bob, that link's not working. Where was this originally posted?

  2. Sorry bout that Brian. I fixed the link to Drew's blog.

    I got the rest of the info from McCain's website and a few other places.

  3. Wow, these are really disappointing levels of giving.

    FYI, your percentage on the McCains is wrong. It should be 2% instead of .02%.

  4. Thanks Jason.. I changed the percentage.

    And I agree with you about being disappointed.

  5. Thanks to CNN here are President Bush's figures for 2007:

    President and Mrs. George W. Bush reported taxable income of $719, 274 for the tax year 2007 and contributed a total of $165,660 (23%) to churches and charitable organizations.

    Some of the donations went to the following: the Crawford, Texas, Volunteer Fire Department, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Malaria No More Fund, Martha's Table and a St. John's Church, most likely St. John's Episcopal Church in the District of Columbia, where the Bushes sometimes attend services.

    The CNN article also say that Dick and Lynne Cheney have donated almost 8 million dollars to charity while serving as Vice President.

  6. Not sure what to say/think about this. Jesus said that when you give to the poor, you should not let the left hand know what the right hand was doing. It bothers me on a deep level that charitable giving/tithing is now a matter of public record.

    BTW, there are some denominations/ congregations that simply do not keep track of who gives what when it comes to passing the plate. That keeps the matter between God and the individual and not subject to the scrutiny and gossip of other members. Some also pass the plate for the individual needs of their members or for the Gideons. As long as you've got honest people doing the accounting, this should not be a reason for concern.

  7. Understand where you are coming from CR. Maybe we don't need to be looking at what the candidates do when no one is looking.. for me.. I am interested in knowing everything I can about them.

    I believe in charity and I am intersted in whether the candidates also believe in charity.

  8. I actually happen to believe that it does matter because it tells us about the core beliefs of a person. The thing that bothers me is that many of these liberals do not contribute to charity because they see government as the solution to America's problems and not non-profits and churches. It's easy not to give to charity when you are constantly going afters someone elses in a Redistribution of Wealth policy.

  9. Your point ("liberals do not contribute to charity") Matt may be evidenced by Biden but not Obama.

    Of course the "conservative" candidates don't seem to believe that much in charity.. seems to make your point a moot one.

  10. Wow! That is very interesting and a different take on the candidates. It also makes me think about our own giving, not enough, not enough. Thanks Bob!


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