Presidents and presidential candidates today are largely seen as being well off. Most presidents bring pre-existing wealth with them into the Oval Office, and they make a not-too-shabby annual salary of $400,000. After leaving office, they receive an annual pension of almost $200,000.
But it wasn’t always that way. Thomas Jefferson died mired in debt. James Monroe needed help from Congress to recover financially after serving. And Ulysses S. Grant got suckered by a Wall Street business partner after his presidency and ended up penniless.