Five Californians Make List of 50 Richest in Congress

Friday, September 14, 2012

The rich get richer, and the richest, apparently, still run for Congress.

California retained its stake in the Roll Call annual survey of the wealthiest members of Congress, placing four members from the House of Representatives and one from the Senate on the list of the Top 50. Republican Representative Michael McCaul of Texas smokes the rest of the pack with a reported minimum net worth of $305.96 million, thanks mostly to his wife, Linda McCaul, an heir to the Clear Channel Communications Inc. fortune amassed by her father, Lowry Mays.  

The wealthiest California legislator is, once again, Republican Congressman Darrell Issa, who checks in at #3 on the list with a reported net worth of at least $140.55 million. Issa dropped a notch from the previous year after his net worth took an $80 million hit. He was supplanted in the #2 spot by Democratic Senator John Kerry ($198.65 million). Issa, a six-term Republican Congressman, founded Directed Electronics Inc., which manufactures car alarms.

Senator Dianne Feinstein is the top California Democrat on the list, holding down the #9 position at $41.78 million. Much of her wealth comes from her husband, Richard Blum, president and CEO of Blum Capital Partners LP, a private equity firm. Although she is in the same #9 position as last year, her net worth is estimated to be down about $3.5 million.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi slipped from #12 to #13, at $26.43 million, down about $8.8 million from last year. She and her husband, Paul Pelosi, have major investments in real estate.

Republican Congressman Gary Miller’s minimum net worth of at least $17.41 million, based mostly on real estate holdings, earns him the #19 spot. He dropped two notches, although his net worth remained virtually the same. Republican Congressman John Campbell, who earned his money in the auto industry but has it mostly in real estate now, brings up the rear at #39 with a minimum net worth of $8.93 million. He was #40 last year, but he added another half-million dollars to his asset total since then.

All 50 politicians on the Roll Call list are worth at least $6 million, with Democratic Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska holding down the final position with $6.14 million.

–Ken Broder   


To Learn More:

The 50 Richest Members of the 112th Congress (2012) (by Amanda Becker, Roll Call)

California's Richest Congressman Slips to No. 3 in Annual Ranking (by Torey Van Oot, Sacramento Bee)

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