How much does Joe Biden give to the Catholic Church? His tax returns give us a clue.
President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and First Lady Jill Biden donated $20,180 to charity in 2022, the White House announced yesterday, pointing to the release of the First Couple’s 2022 tax returns. The Bidens reported gifts to 20 charities, including several Catholic parishes in both their home state of Delaware and in Washington, D.C.
The largest single gift, $5,000, was to the Beau Biden Foundation, an organization named for the president’s late son that helps fight child abuse. The Bidens also donated $2,000 to the Fraternal Order of Police Foundation and $1,000 to the Cranston Heights Fire Company, a nonprofit emergency services organization in Delaware.
Several Catholic parishes also received gifts from the president and first lady.
The president’s home parish in Delaware, St. Joseph on the Brandywine, received $1,680; St. Edmund’s in Rehoboth Beach received $150. (St. Patrick’s Center, a social services nonprofit in Wilmington that was historically affiliated with the adjacent church, received $600.)
At least two Catholic churches in Washington, D.C., also received gifts: $175 to Holy Trinity Catholic Church, a Jesuit parish in Georgetown, and St. Peter’s Church on Capitol Hill, which received $500. The tax forms note a $250 donation to “Sacred Heart.” The president and first lady attended Mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Uvalde, Texas, last May, following a deadly shooting at an elementary school that left 19 students and teachers dead.
With an adjusted gross income of $579,514, the Bidens reported paying $169,820 in federal and state taxes and donating about 3.5 percent of their earnings to charity.
The tax filings show that the Bidens contributed at least $3,405 to Catholic churches, plus another $1,125 to the Westminster Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, Del., where Ms. Biden is a member, according to the church’s website. That puts their total charitable giving to religious organizations to at least $4,530.
According to the Center for Church Management at Villanova University, givers at Catholic parishes in the United States donate $1,603 annually, which would place the donations from the Bidens to Catholic churches above the national average.
But that the Bidens donate to religious organizations at all places them among the minority of Americans who make similar gifts.
According to the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University, just 29 percent of U.S. households gave to religious causes in 2018, down from about 46 percent in the early 2000s.
With an adjusted gross income of $579,514, the Bidens reported paying $169,820 in federal and state taxes and donating about 3.5 percent of their earnings to charity. That places the Bidens slightly above the national average for individuals in his income bracket, who donate about 2 percent of their earnings to charity, according to the Philanthropy Roundtable.
Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emghoff, also released their tax returns. The couple donated to a number of Jewish and Protestant organizations, including $1,000 to the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles and $1,000 Third Baptist Church in San Francisco. The Second Couple’s charitable giving totaled $23,000.
Correction: An earlier version of this article misstated the percentage of U.S. households gave to religious causes in the early 2000s.