King’s Pay Grade: Palace Included

Photograph by Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Jordan’s King Abdullah II and President Barack Obama hold a press conference at Al-Hummar Palace in Amman on March 22, 2013. Obama arrived in Jordan to face scrutiny over his Syria strategy, on the last leg of a Middle East tour after challenging Israelis to embrace peace with Palestinians.

Who makes more money than a king?

Today in Jordan, standing with the $400,000-a-year president of the United States, King Abdullah II said that the question of potential asylum for the besieged Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is beyond his pay grade.

Bloomberg’s Julianna Goldman reports that Abdullah, at a news conference with President Barack Obama in Amman, said Jordan has absorbed 460,000 refugees fleeing the civil war in Syria and that number may double by the end of the year.

Jordan “just can’t turn our back” on children and the wounded trying to escape fighting between Bashar al-Assad’s regime and the opposition, the king said. “Refugees will continue to come through and we will continue within our means to look after them the best we can.”

As for Assad, however, the king was deferring to a higher authority, as CBS’s Mark Knoller noted. This, from the 41st-generation direct descendant of the Prophet Mohammad and monarch since 1999.

We know what Obama is paid. The official Web-site of Jordan’s king, however, has plenty to say about the “royal vision,” his initiatives and speeches. But there’s no pay stub there.

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