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The White House official whose job, until recently, included monitoring reporters’ tweets makes $42,420. David Simas, the head of the West Wing’s political office, makes $172,200. The chief calligrapher, Patricia Blair, pulls down $97,692.
And two Obama aides make $0 dollars — one, Nathaniel Loewenthiel, is a recent Yale Law School graduate listed as “policy advisor,” while the other is Elyse Cohen, deputy director of Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” fitness initiative. (A White House official notes that employees whose federal salary is $0 "may receive compensation from other sources, such as through fellowships or foundations.")
Under a 1995 law, the White House must inform Congress how much it pays staff. The Obama administration made the information public in searchable database form.
White House press secretary Jay Carney left his perch just two weeks ago, but he’s already been stricken from the list. His successor, Josh Earnest, makes $172,200.
That’s the highest salary for White House staff — and 11 men and 11 women currently make that much. Obama has taken heat in the past for reportedly paying West Wing women less than their male counterparts despite complaining about a national pay gap as he campaigns for Democrats.
In total, the 457 employees make $37,776,925, for an average yearly salary of about $82,663.