Congressional wealth grows, analysis shows

Nov. 1, 2011 at 8:23 AM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- The collective net worth of U.S. congressmen was more than $2 billion last year, nearly 25 percent higher than in 2008, an analysis indicated.

Roll Call said its analysis of members' financial disclosure forms found four-fifths of the increase was concentrated in the 50 richest members of Congress.

Financial disclosure forms filed this year indicate the minimum net worth in the House was $1.26 billion while the net worth for senators climbed to at least $784 million, for a congressional total of $2.04 billion, Roll Call reported Tuesday. The publication said it calculated minimum net worth by adding the minimum values of all reported assets then subtracting the minimum values of all reported liabilities.

Two years ago, House members had a net worth of slightly more than $1 billion and senators had a minimum worth of $651 million for a congressional total of $1.65 billion, Roll Call said.

The 50 wealthiest members of Congress accounted for 78 percent of the net worth in 2008 -- $1.29 billion of the $1.65 billion total, the analysis found. In 2010, the share of the 50 richest rose to 80 percent, $1.63 billion of the $2.04 billion total.

The wealth was distributed pretty evenly between the two parties, but the Roll Call analysis yielded one interesting note: Democrats hold about 80 percent of the wealth in the Senate, which they control, and Republicans have about 78 percent of the wealth in the GOP-led House.

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