Politicians vying for the highest office in America often try to project a down-home demeanor to endear themselves to the electorate. At the same time, nobody can mount a serious campaign for the presidency without money, and lots of it. So as nice as it is to come off like someone a voter would love to have a beer with, even the folksiest candidate will never make it to the Iowa caucus without a vast war chest.
Since it takes money to run for president, it’s not surprising some of the best-known candidates have had vast personal fortunes at their disposal to bolster their bids. Sure, there are the political action committees, interest groups and regular voters sending in money to fund their candidates, but a multimillion-dollar arsenal may help even the least-popular one get to Super Tuesday.
Using data from Wealth-X, a global intelligence firm specializing in information about ultra-high net worth individuals, CNBC.com ranks the 10 richest people who have sought the U.S. presidency since 1992. Some of them made their fortunes before their presidential runs, and others cleaned up afterward, so the Wealth-X data lists the candidates’ current net worth, regardless of when their presidential runs took place.
Some of the people who made the list might surprise you, but what’s more surprising is who didn’t make it — the Bushes, Herman Cain, Rick Perry and John McCain, among others.