When a president dies, the country pays for their burial. In the case of a president like JFK, who was a war hero and assassinated in the middle of a term, something extravagant is in order. His burial at Arlington with the memorial paid for by the people cost almost $4 million in today’s money, adjusted for inflation. The Kennedy family paid for the casket, vault and the eternal flame.
Ronald Reagan, one of the most influential men in history, is buried in California at his Presidential Library, paid for by donations from the people and the Reagan family. In fact, other than Kennedy, which we can all agree was warranted, no president has ever cost the taxpayers more than $100K in today’s money to bury.
The clause in the Presidential Contract enacted by congress in 1819 states that the president shall receive the burial service deemed fit for his stature and that the cost of the funeral and burial plot will be paid for by the people of a grateful nation. While every president who has died in modern history, except Reagan, took advantage of that perk of the presidency, none have gone so far that anyone would ever have noticed. Until now that is.
Barack Obama has just submitted his plans for burial in a plot that will house his entire family, citing the Kennedys, the Tafts and the Roosevelts as precedent, inside a monument he had designed to celebrate the nation’s first black president. The monument, which will occupy space on the National Mall along with monuments to Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson and hundreds of thousands of fallen heroes, will cost the taxpayers roughly $120 million and will be listed as a national historical place with 24 hour protection from the 3rd US Infantry Regiment, just like the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
The memorial would be built immediately upon approval and occupy the Northeast quadrant of the lawn near the Washington Monument with a view of the White House:
The monument itself would include quotes from his years as president along with a giant bronze statue and burial crypts for him and his family under a large arch:
You heard that right. Obama will be guarded around the clock in a monument among those of our founding fathers and greatest heroes, paid for by the taxpayer. It’s not too late to call your congressman and object. He should be in a cemetery in Chicago with the community he spent so much time “organizing,” not in a monument on our National Mall.