Daniel Hemel: What Does Trump Mean When He Says He Will Take No Salary?

What Does Trump Mean When He Says He Will Take No Salary?
Daniel Hemel
Whatever Source Derived
March 13, 2017

Despite Donald Trump’s campaign promise that he “won’t take even one dollar” of salary as President, the White House now says that the President is receiving his monthly paychecks and that he will donate his salary to charity at the end of the year. This raises a number of questions:

— The President is paid $400,000 in monthly installments. $400,000 divided by 12 months equals $33,333.33 per month. The President apparentlyreceives his paycheck on the 20th day of the month, with his first paycheck on February 20. So by December 31, Trump will have received 11 paychecks totaling $366,666.63, not the full $400,000. Will he donate $400,000 nonetheless?

— Assuming that the answer is “no” and that the President’s charitable contribution is limited to the amount received by end of year, what about interest? If Trump immediately deposits each paycheck into an Ally savings account with a 1.00% annual percentage yield (compounded daily), then he will have approximately $368,294.45 on December 31, of which $1,627.82 represents interest income. Will he donate the interest to charity as well?

Faculty: 
Daniel Hemel