There was a time when running for president was actually a money-losing venture.
In fact, over the last 30 or so years, most presidential candidates (including some who actually won) ended up with tremendous debts after the campaign. Being in the red during and after a campaign was so common that paying off a former opponent’s campaign debt was seen as a benevolent form of political stunting. (Thanks, Obama!) But all of that has changed since Citizens United in 2010. Thanks to super PACs and enforcement mechanisms flimsier than tissue paper, running for president can now become a ridiculous money grab if you’re willing to put in the time.