For the First Time, Half of Members of Congress are Millionaires…Democrats Worth more than Republicans

Saturday, January 11, 2014
Rep. Darell Issa

Members of Congress continued to get richer last year, resulting in more than 50% of lawmakers possessing a net worth of $1 million or more—something that’s never happened before in congressional history.

 

Of 534 current members of Congress, at least 268 were millionaires, according the Center for Responsive Politics’ review of financial disclosure reports filed last year.

 

The median net worth for the 530 lawmakers who were in Congress as of the May 2013 filing deadline was $1,008,767—up from $966,000 during the previous year.

 

The center also found that Democrats overall were a little wealthier than Republicans in Congress, $1.04 million versus $1 million.  Both groups saw their collective net worth go up, from $990,000 for Democrats and $907,000 for Republicans in the previous year.

 

Democrats in the House were richer than their GOP counterparts, $929,000 versus $884,000. House Republicans, however, could boast having the richest member: Darrell Issa of California, who has had this distinction in other years. The Viper car-alarm magnate has a net worth of $464 million.

 

In the Senate, the GOP caucus was noticeably wealthier than the Democratic caucus, $2.9 million versus $1.7 million.

 

Senate Democrats experienced a steep drop in their median net worth from $2.4 million in 2011, due in part to the loss of two multimillionaires: John Kerry of Massachusetts (net worth $248 million) and Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey ($87.5 million). Nonetheless, the four richest senators are still Democrats: Mark Warner of Virginia ($257 million), Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut ($104 million), Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia ($101 million) and Diane Feinstein of California ($68 million).

 

The center noted: “Members of Congress have long been far wealthier than the typical American, but the fact that now a majority of members—albeit just a hair over 50 percent—are millionaires represents a watershed moment at a time when lawmakers are debating issues like unemployment benefits, food stamps and the minimum wage, which affect people with far fewer resources, as well as considering an overhaul of the tax code.”

-Noel Brinkerhoff

 

To Learn More:

Millionaires' Club: For First Time, Most Lawmakers are Worth $1 Million-Plus (OpenSecrets.org)

Half of Congress Members Are Millionaires, Report Says (by Eric Lipton, New York Times)

2012 Personal Financial Disclosures

The Rich Get Richer…and So Does Congress (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)

Wealth Gap between Congress and Other Americans Widens to 9 to 1 (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)

See all 19 comments

Comments

disaksen 3 months ago
How much wealth a person in congress has is not as important as how much of that money came from their actions (lobbyist, back-door dealing, benefits/money gained because of laws they created or voted to pass, etc) while they were serving in congress. There's an awful lot of wheeling and dealing done by some members of congress that will bring them great wealth and benefits AFTER they've left office.
Kathy 10 months ago
First off , dont get mad at the Man who actually worked hard to get his, but these guys who we find are Millionaires 'after' being in Congress for a while, well...hmmmmmmmm what Lobbyist filled their pockets?
Larry White 10 months ago
Mr. Rodriquez...Only in capitalism do the poor get richer also and justice has nothing to do with making ends meet. "...Prior to capitalism, the way people amassed great wealth was by looting, plundering and enslaving their fellow man. Capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving your fellow man." Dr. Walter E. Williams. I bet you, Rod, have a computer that cost more than my first three cars. I bet you read and write in safe warm place and I bet you think capitalism is bad Social System. It is a good Economic System...learn it; use it. you'll like it.
MC 10 months ago
Issa owns a business and makes money from it? What an evil man he is......(sarc)
Triple Lindy 10 months ago
I am interested to know exactly what criteria is used to determine what is a millionaire. Does this mean total assets, such as the house, land,cars,stocks, bank accounts,401ks and IRAs? If that is the case, a million is really not that much. Many people, farmers for example, are millionaires on paper.
rodriguez 10 months ago
That's CAPITALIST.Great isn't? GET USED TO IT.RICH GET RICHER AND WE BEARLY MAKE ENDS MEET.THERE IS NO JUSTICE. THANK YOU LAWMAKERS. ROG.
Nikluss6 10 months ago
At least these scumbags are eating good while they take their sweet time extending unemployment benefits.I don't know how these people sleep at night.Oh yeah they sleep great cause they have comfortable beds,heat and a huge roof over their heads unlike the people whose unemployment insurance they just cut at the end of 2013.Sleep well scumbags.God is watching.
Mr Jackson 10 months ago
No, we did not vote them in. They paid their ways in. Politics are for the wealthy. Regular people do not get a chance to participate. Some of us cannot afford the time off for voting, and the people running are not REAL people. Real people do not get elected. The wealthy push their way through things to run for offices, they have high priced campaigns and dinners that I cannot afford.
WARP 10 months ago
This should not surprise anyone, this is why they represent only the rich an everyone else can get screwed, but again we screw ourselves because we voted those millionaires in!
college_student 10 months ago
that's great!!! cuz i'm getting poorer... SCREW YOU GOV'T!!!!!!!!!!!

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