Saturday, September 10, 2011

5 top richest people in Congress

McCaul’s wealth exploded in 2010, making him the richest member of Congress by tens of millions of dollars.
McCaul reported a minimum net worth of $73.8 million in 2009. The huge climb in his fortune can be partly attributed to several assets — mostly family trusts and companies — that McCaul estimated were worth a minimum of $50 million each. Furthermore, “certain assets owned by spouse were acquired via a gift from spouse’s parents,” according to McCaul’s 2010 financial disclosure report, although it’s unclear which assets were gifts from the congressman’s in-laws.
Most of the four-term House Republican’s wealth comes from his relatives: father-in-law Lowry Mays founded one of the country’s most profitable radio broadcasting companies, Clear Channel Communications. All of the lawmaker’s assets are either attributed to his spouse, Linda, or a dependent child, according to his 2010 financial disclosure form.
Linda McCaul also has an interest in Laguna Water Company, a water distribution company, and a real estate partnership, both based in San Antonio, Texas, and both worth at least $100,000.
McCaul reported no liabilities for 2010.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman has always been one of the richest members of Congress, but his wealth shot up in 2010 by almost $60 million.

The rise in Issa’s fortune can be explained by his creation at the end of 2010 of several limited partnerships that received commercial properties from DEI LLC, a commercial property management company in Vista, Calif. Many of those new companies are worth at least $5 million each, and helped b
oost the value of his assets.
Issa founded Directed Electronics, the nation’s biggest manufacturer of car security systems.
Issa reported two massive liabilities in 2010: a debt with Greene Properties worth at least $50 million and another liability with DEI valued at least $25 million.

Kerry no longer holds the crown of richest member of Congress, but he still was able to increase his wealth by nearly $5 million in 2010.

That spike can be attributed mostly to Kerry reducing his liabilities. The senator reported he had more than $39 million of debt in 2010, compared to more than $44 million in 2009. The worth of his assets remained relatively the same, at the $232 million mark.
Kerry’s second wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, is the widow of the late ketchup heir and former Sen. John Heinz (R-Pa.). Several of the Massachusetts Democrat’s assets that are attributed to Heinz Kerry are listed as “over $1,000,000” in value, which is in line with ethics rules but obscures how wealthy the couple really is.

The West Virginia senator’s wealth fell by more than $2 million this year, down from $83.7 million in 2009, due to some of his assets losing value.

Family trusts make up the bulk of Rockefeller’s wealth — his largest asset is a trust at JPMorgan Chase worth at least $50 million. Another trust, held at Wachovia Bank, is worth at least $25 million. His wife, Sharon Percy, also holds more than $1 million in stock at PepsiCo Inc., where is she is a board director.
Much of Rockefeller’s fortune stems from the money made by his great-grandfather, John D. Rockefeller. His company, Standard Oil, made the family name synonymous with wealth. Some estimate he was the wealthiest man in history. 

Warner’s fortune climbed by more than $6 million in 2010.

The increase in the Virginia Democrat’s wealth can be partly attributed to Warner paring down his debts. While the senator had more than $1 million in liabilities in 2009, he greatly reduced that debt to just one liability: a loan guarantee with Virginia Commerce Bank, worth at least $15,000.
Before entering public service, Warner was an early investor in Nextel and dabbled in venture capital for tech companies. He still has several assets tied to one investment firm, Columbia Capital Corp., some worth at least $5 million each.
Written by : The Hill's Staff


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