How the 15 richest members of Congress made their money

MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty ImagesThe House chamber during the 2019 State of the Union address.
  • There are many elected officials with large fortunes independent of the salaries they earn while serving in Congress.
  • Members of Congress earn a salary of $US174,000.
  • Here are the richest members currently serving in the House and Senate, based on their reported net worth.

Members of Congress earn a salary of $US174,000, which is well over twice the national average household income. But many representatives and senators are independently wealthy from previous careers or significant gains they have made outside of their legislative work.

Here are the 15 richest members currently serving in the House and Senate and where the wealth comes from, according to a 2018 analysis by Roll Call.

15. Francis Rooney — $US22.6 million

Bill Clark/CQ Roll CallRep. Francis Rooney (R-Fla.).

Republican Rep. Francis Rooney of Florida has earned a large fortune from his business, Manhattan Construction Group, which has built massive projects such as Cowboys Stadium.

14. Ro Khanna — $US27 million

Rep. Ro Khanna of California’s wealth comes via his wife, Ritu, who is worth millions from her father’s investment firm, Mura Holdings. Khanna’s father-in-law, Monte Ahuja, is also founder and CEO of the automotive transmission giant Transtar, another contributor to Rep. Khanna’s substantial net worth.

13. Roger Williams — $US27.7 million

Tom Williams/CQ Roll CallRep. Roger Williams (R-Texas).

Republican Rep. Roger Williams of Texas owns and operates auto dealerships all across the Lone Star State – selling Dodge, Chrysler, and Jeep cars and trucks.

12. Suzan DelBene — $US28.4 million

Rep. Suzan DelBene of Washington and her husband have both held high-level positions at Microsoft, one of the largest corporations in the world.

11. Don Beyer — $US31.2 million

Alex Wong/Getty ImagesRep. Don Beyer (D-Va.).

Rep. Don Beyer of Virginia is a major auto dealer in the Washington, DC area. He also served as the US ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein under former President Barack Obama.

10. Scott Peters — $US32 million

Bill Clark/CQ Roll CallRep. Scott Peters (D-Calif.).

Democratic Rep. Scott Peters of California had a long career as an attorney in high-profile cases. He has also reinvested a lot of his earnings and is married to Lynn Gorguze, the president and CEO of Cameron Holdings, a private equity firm.

9. Paul Mitchell — $US37.7 million

Tom Williams/CQ Roll CallRep. Paul Mitchell (R-Mich.).

Republican Rep. Paul Mitchell of Michigan is not the hair products icon of the same name, but has been a corporate executive with a sizable portfolio.

8. Chris Collins — $US43.5 million

Bill Clark/CQ Roll CallRep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.).

Rep. Chris Collins of New York, the first elected Republican to endorse Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential bid, owns stake in various companies ranging from manufacturing to biotechnology. Collins was recently stripped of his committee assignments after being indicted for insider trading. His trial is set for early 2020.

7. Trey Hollingsworth — $US50.1 million

Tom Williams/CQ Roll CallRep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-Ind.).

Rep. Trey Hollingsworth is only 34 years old, but the Indiana Republican has a sizable fortune from his father, the founder of Hollingsworth Capital Partners, which renovates factories.

6. Dianne Feinstein — $US58.5 million

Zach Gibson/Getty ImagesSen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California holds stake in Carlton hotels, according to Roll Call. In addition, she is married to Blum Capital president and chairman Richard Blum.

5. Richard Blumenthal — $US70 million

Mark Wilson/Getty ImagesSen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut has significant assets from real estate across New York, partly due to his wife, Cynthia Malkin. Malkin is the daughter of real estate mogul Peter Malkin.

4. Vern Buchanan — $US73.9 million

Bill Clark/CQ Roll CallRep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.).

Republican Rep. Vern Buchanan of Florida is a highly successful auto-dealer across the southeastern United States. Buchanan recently came under fire for purchasing a yacht estimated to be valued between $US1-5 million dollars the same day he voted for the Republican tax cuts bill in 2017.

3. Mark Warner — $US90.2 million

Win McNamee/Getty ImagesSen. Mark Warner (D-Va.).

Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia is the richest senator, earning his wealth through real estate, energy, and telecommunications. Warner has also been a venture capitalist.

2. Rep. Michael McCaul — $US113 million

Tom Williams/CQ Roll CallRep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas).

Republican Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas made his way to being the number two wealthiest member of Congress through his wife, Linda McCaul, who is the daughter of radio and communications giant Lowry Mays.

1. Rep. Greg Gianforte — $US135.7 million

William Campbell-Corbis via Getty ImagesRep. Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.).

Montana’s at-large Rep. Greg Gianforte, a Republican, is currently the wealthiest member of Congress, earning his fortune through software development.

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