Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) has dethroned Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) as the richest member of Congress, according to The Hill’s annual list of the 50 wealthiest lawmakers.
McCaul reported a net worth of at least $287 million, by far the most of any lawmaker.
Analysis for The Hill’s Wealthiest shows that 2010 was a banner year for many well-heeled members of Congress. Lawmakers including Republican Rep. Darrell Issa (Calif.) and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) saw gains of millions of dollars in their fortunes.
Together, the 50 wealthiest lawmakers reported a minimum net worth of $1.6 billion, about $200 million more than the lawmakers who appeared on 2010’s list.
Last year’s wave election brought big changes to The Hill’s rankings. More than a dozen lawmakers appear on the list for the first time, including 10 Tea Party-backed GOP freshmen with backgrounds in business, medicine and auto sales, among other professions.
The richest GOP freshman is Rep. Jim Renacci (Ohio), who reported a minimum net worth of $35.9 million, ranking him 11th on The Hill’s list.
One freshman Democrat, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), edged into the top 10 with a minimum net worth of $54.9 million.
GOP gains in the 2010 elections helped shift the list toward Republicans. Six Democrats who made The Hill’s 50 Wealthiest in 2010 lost their reelection bids.
The rankings include 32 Republicans and 18 Democrats. By chamber, the breakdown is 29 from the House, 21 from the Senate.
To compile the rankings, The Hill reviewed all the congressional financial disclosure reports that lawmakers filed for the 2010 calendar year.
Those reports do not have precise values for lawmakers’ assets and liabilities but instead disclose value ranges for each item. The Hill’s researchers recorded the lowest number of each value range to calculate lawmakers’ assets and liabilities. The sum of the liabilities was subtracted from the assets for a low-end estimate of each lawmaker’s net worth.
Click through the following pages for the list of the wealthiest lawmakers and see how much they’re worth.
—Kevin Bogardus and Margaret Rawson
See the full list at The Hill’s 2011 50 Wealthiest in Congress – TheHill.com.