On Closing the White House Tours

So the White House is closing its doors to the public today. Budget cuts related to the sequester are the blame.

The WH tours are closed after a decision by the Secret Service that it could not afford to maintain security. The savings for shuttering the WH comes to a measly $2m over the next seven months. I’m thinking this is a bullshit move by Obama; he’s trying to get the public hostile toward Republicans. If the visitors to D.C. who are disappointed in not being able to visit the WH actually knew the facts, they would be mad at Obama, not the Republicans.

The Secret Service budget for 2013 is $1.67b. The $2m savings from closing the WH comes to 0.12% of the budget for the Secret Service, it’s equal to 0.00005% of total spending. Closing the WH is a dumb way to save some money. Some other places where the $2m could have been absorbed:

  • Information Technology Portfolio – $200m
  • Transformation Initiative – $50m
  • Oregon and California Grant Lands – $113m
  • Payments to States in Lieu of Coal Fee Receipts – $128m
  • Lower Colorado River Basin Development Fund – $254m
  • Upper Colorado River Basin Fund – $92m
  • Surveys, Investigations, and Research – $1,075m
  • Operation of the National Park System – $3,000m
  • Mineral Leasing and Associated Payments – $2,144m
  • Salaries and Expenses, United States Attorneys – $1,972m
  • Capital and Debt Service Grants to the National Railroad Passenger Corporation – $958m
  • Grants for Specified Energy Property in Lieu of Tax Credits, Recovery Act – $3,671m
  • Foreign Military Financing Program – $6,344m
  • Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability Fund – $850m
  • Assistance for Europe, Eurasia and Central Asia – $631m
  • Commodity Futures Trading Commission – $206m
  • Corporation for Public Broadcasting – $445m
  • Tennessee Valley Authority Fund – $445m

If you don’t find anything on that list (there are thousands of other line items to choose from) consider saving the money to keep the WH open from these big accounts:

  • Military Procurement – $100B (50,000 Xs the cost of keeping the WH open)
  • Military R&D – $87B (43,500 Xs the cost of keeping the WH open)

The problem with the sequester is that it is a meataxe approach to cutting. It’s a dumb way to go about the process. The Secret Service is facing cut backs, it will be forced to pare back $84m of expenses. But to have those cuts centered around the public access to the White House is just for show.

All of D.C. is going to look dumb before this is over. Obama might get the award for deliberately mismanaging the process. Let’s hope so.

About Bruce Krasting 208 Articles

Bruce worked on Wall Street for twenty five years, he has been writing for the professional press for the last five years and has been on the Fox Business channel several times as a guest describing his written work.

From 1990-1995 he ran a private hedge fund in Greenwich Ct. called Falconer Limited. Investments were driven by macro developments. He closed the fund and retired in 1995. Bruce also been employed by Drexel Burnham Lambert, Citicorp, Credit Suisse and Irving Trust Corp.

Bruce holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Ithaca College and currently lives in Westchester, NY.

Visit: Bruce Krasting's Blog

1 Comment on On Closing the White House Tours

  1. The least transparent and most corrupt regime in US history is denying taxpayers and visitors
    a chance to tour the White House. Heads should roll over this idiotic decision. Let King and
    Queen Obama cancel some of their trips to pay for this, it costs millions for their last trips
    with hundreds of agents. America is turned into a laughing stock for the world to see.

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