Just days after former President Obama stepped back into the public eye, he found himself at the center of a brand-new controversy.
After years of championing income equality and condemning the concentration of wealth “at the very top,” news broke that Obama would earn a full $400,000 for a September speaking engagement — specifically, a Wall Street conference.
As ABC News notes, the revelation has left many of the former president's critics accusing him of being an outright “hypocrite,” and even leading Democrats haven't been able to ignore what Obama's massive speaking fee says about the party that has long claimed to fight “for the little guy”:
Perhaps chief among these Democrat critics is Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).
When the topic of Obama's six-figure fee came up during SiriusXM's “Alter Family Politics” show, Warren responded:
"I was troubled by that.
One of the things I talk about in the book ["This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America's Middle Class"] is the influence of money.
I describe it as a snake that slithers through Washington and that it shows up in so many different ways here in Washington."
Warren's criticism of Obama also caught the attention of President Trump, who was quick to share it with his own 28.4 million Twitter followers.
Still, Warren isn't the only influential Democrat to lash out at the former commander-in-chief:
Sen. Bernie Sander (I-VT) added his voice to the criticism on Friday, telling CNN that even he's not a fan of his “friend” Obama's latest move:
"I just think it does not look good. I just think it is distasteful — not a good idea that he did that ...
At a time when we have so much income and wealth inequality ... I think it just does not look good."
It should be noted that Obama spokesman Eric Schultz has defended the speaking fee by citing the financial reforms that Obama enacted as president — an argument that Fox News' Tucker Carlson dismantled Tuesday night.
Nonetheless, both Warren and Sanders may want to think twice before throwing around financial criticism.