In an era of intense political polarization in Washington, it seems that both parties in Congress can finally agree on at least one important thing: they're both richer than ever.
On Thursday, the Center for Responsive Politics released the 2012 personal finances of the members of Congress, revealing that for the first time, a majority of Washington lawmakers are millionaires. Additionally, the median net worth of politicians in Congress also exceeded $1 million, with 238 of the 534 members living above the $1 million mark. Taking a closer look, the median net worth for the House was $896,000 (Democrats averaged 929,000 and Republicans 884,000), while the average Senator is sitting on roughly $2.5 million (Republicans averaged $2.9 million and Democrats $1.7 million).
Rest assured, the point of this list is not to chastise anyone for their wealth, but rather to remind everyone that the people writing our laws — the ones passing budgets (or not passing them), deciding whether to extend unemployment benefits, debating raising the minimum wage, and overhauling the tax code — are enjoying a very selective experience in our economy.
1. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), Net worth: $464 million
Before his election to Congress, The Chairman of the House Oversight Committee founded Directed Electronics, which manufactures car alarms (a LOT of them).
2. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), Net worth: $257 million
The Virginia Democrat made his millions as the co-founder of Nextel. Warner currently holds stock in "Columbia Capital Equity Partners," a Virginia based investment company.
3. Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.), Net worth: $198 million
The Colorodo lawmaker (and his parents) founded an online greeting card company which he later sold for $780 million, as well as the webiste ProFlowers.com.
4. Rep. John K. Delaney (D-Md.), Net worth: $155 million
After graduating from Georgetown Law School, Delaney founded two companies later listed on the New York Stock Exchange (Health Care Financial Partners and CapitalSource).
5. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Net worth: $143 million
The majority of Rep. McCaul's wealth comes from his wife, Linda McCaul, who is the daughter of Lowry Mays, the CEO and founder of Clear Channel Communications.
6. Rep. Scott Peters (D-Calif.), Net worth: $112 million
Rep. Peters' and his wife Lynn's wealth is the result of venture capital investing.
7. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Net worth: $104 million
Most of Senator Blumenthal's fortune comes from his wife, Cynthia Blumenthal, who is the daughter of a New York real estate mogul.
8. Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), Net worth $101 million
The West Virginia Senator is the great-grandson of the oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller.
9. Rep. Vernon Buchanan (R-Fla.), Net worth: $89 million
Most of Buchanan's wealth comes from his Florida automotive empire.
10. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Net worth: $88 million
The House Minority leader's husband, Paul Pelosi, owns and operates Financial Leasing Services Inc., a San Francisco-based real estate and venture capital investment firm.