Barack Obama memoir to garner $20M advance

Esther Newberg, co-head of ICM Partners’ publishing unit, believes that if former president Barack Obama puts out his memoir, he could get a $20 million advance.

“There’s no doubt Obama’s memoir will go for more than any president’s has ever gone,” she claimed.

Princeton University presidential historian Julian Zelizer seems to agree, saying that the draw would come from both sides of the political aisle: “There is broader fascination with Obama, from conservatives who really hate him as well as liberals who deeply admire what he did.”

It’s likely that the memoir would be published by Random House, since they were the ones that published Obama’s 1995 memoir Dreams of My Father and 2008 campaign book The Audacity of Hope.

Obama, repped by lawyer Bob Barnett, said that his memoir is a top priority in speaking with CNN commentator David Axelrod.

However, Newberg believes that his wife, Michelle Obama, could “easily” surpass him should she throw her hat in the ring.

The University of Virginia’s Brian Balogh said of the former First Lady, “We haven’t heard as much from [Michelle], and he won’t be running for president, whereas she …”