DVD Talk Forum

DVD Talk Forum (https://forum.dvdtalk.com/)
-   Religion, Politics and World Events (https://forum.dvdtalk.com/religion-politics-world-events-47/)
-   -   More than half US Senators are now millionaires (https://forum.dvdtalk.com/religion-politics-world-events/581366-more-than-half-us-senators-now-millionaires.html)

NORML54601 10-30-10 01:29 AM

More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
http://www.rollcall.com/issues/56_42/news/51039-1.html


Senate Procures Influx of Millionaires
By Jennifer Yachnin
Roll Call Staff
Oct. 28, 2010, 12 a.m.

The Senate’s famed “millionaires club” is becoming a little crowded.

According to a Roll Call analysis of Senate financial disclosure forms filed in 2010, more than half of the chamber’s membership, 54 lawmakers, reported a minimum net worth of more than $1 million. Another four Senators fell short of that mark by less than $100,000.

In addition, more than half of the Senate’s membership saw their individual fortunes grow in 2009, the period covered by their most recent disclosure reports.

Those increases are reflected in the chamber’s combined minimum wealth, which increased to about $680 million in 2009, or more than 4 percent higher than the previous year.

Roll Call’s analysis of Senators’ wealth is based solely on the information lawmakers provide in their annual reports. The minimum value of all liabilities is subtracted from the minimum value for all assets.

Among the Senators who tallied the largest percentage increases in wealth in 2009, several lawmakers benefited from inheritances.

Sen. John Cornyn reported four new investment funds and a retirement account valued at a combined $96,000, inherited from his mother. The additional funds increased his minimum net worth 550 percent, to at least $130,000.

Despite his significant percentage increase, the Texas Republican is among the 10 poorest Senators, tied with Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) in 90th place.

Sen. Sherrod Brown saw his bottom line increase to $370,000, nearly 429 percent over the minimum net worth of $70,000 he disclosed in his previous report.

That increase results from an uptick in the value of the Ohio Democrat’s investment in the Mansfield, Ohio-based Brownlea Farm, which rose to at least $250,000. He had previously valued his investment in his family farm, which he first began reporting in 1992, at $15,000.

According to his office, Brown’s family had the farm reappraised in 2009 following the death of his mother. An amendment Brown filed in May states he should have previously reported his share of the farm at the higher value.

Along with another amendment Brown filed in March reevaluating his investment in his state’s pension plan, the Ohio Senator’s minimum net worth for 2008 would have been reported at $384,000.

His current $370,000 net worth places him 77th among his colleagues, tied with Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.).

Sen. Jeff Sessions, whose mother also died in 2009, reported an increased value in several properties, noting in his report that the parcels are being appraised as part of his mother’s estate.

The Alabama Republican reported the value of the largest asset, 1,100 acres of timberland, at $1 million to $5 million.

He also reported 500 acres of farmland in Wilcox County, Ala., valued at $500,000 to $1 million. He previously reported a half-interest in the same property, valuing it at $250,000 to $500,000. The report also lists three other tracts of Alabama timberland comprising another 63 acres.

Sessions’ minimum net worth increased 124 percent from $1 million to at least $2.24 million in 2009. He is now the 33rd wealthiest Member of the Senate, tied with Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.).

Both Sens. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) also reported gains of at least 100 percent — catapulting both lawmakers out of the red after each reported a negative net worth the previous calendar year.

Baucus no longer reports a $100,000 line of credit from Sun Trust Bank, increasing his net worth to about $10,000.

Stabenow likewise dropped a $15,000 revolving line of credit from a Lansing, Mich.-based credit union, which brings her reported net worth to $0. She reports no assets and no liabilities.

It is possible that both Senators are worth significantly more, however.

While lawmakers are required to disclose their personal finances annually, the forms allow Senators to report their assets and liabilities in wide ranges, providing a sometimes imprecise summary of each lawmaker’s fiscal state.

The financial disclosure process also shields certain assets from public view, including primary or secondary residences that do not produce income, as well as artwork, antiques or other collectibles not held for investment purposes. Payments from federal retirement accounts and Social Security also are exempt from the reporting requirements.

Such exemptions likely account for the more than 43 percent drop in wealth Sen. Amy Klobuchar reported in 2009.

The Minnesota Democrat, who claimed about $300,000 in 2008, reported transferring assets from four private 401(k) retirement accounts to the government’s Thrift Savings Plan, which Senators are not required to report.

As Roll Call reported in its 50 Richest Members of Congress survey in September, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) remains the wealthiest lawmaker, with $188.37 million. Another 21 Senators also are among the richest Members.

Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) ranks as the poorest Member of Congress in 2009, despite the fact that he likely is among the richest.

Like most lawmakers, Kohl uses only the broad reporting categories required in the financial disclosure forms to provide information on his finances. Those forms limit the greatest minimum value of an asset to “over $50 million.”

On the forms, Kohl places the value of his NBA franchise, the Milwaukee Bucks, in the more than $50 million category. Forbes estimated in December that the team is worth $254 million.

But with the NBA franchise contributing only $50 million to Kohl’s wealth, according to the form, and liabilities related to the team counted elsewhere at $115 million, Kohl’s minimum net worth on financial disclosures settles at negative $4.64 million.
This doesn't really bother me. Rich or not I'm of the opinion that my representatives are out-of-touch. The link has a chart where you can check your reps. numbers. Also, Herb Kohl is beyond rich, in addition to the Bucks and many other assets, he also owns a chain of dept. stores in WI.

kvrdave 10-30-10 02:19 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
It all sounds like fishy reporting to me. Several show (or recently showed) a negative net worth? These people are over 40, educated, and....maybe that explains our country's finances, actually.

I don't know my net worth exactly, but I'd show up ahead of probably 20 Senators by the looks of how they report.

Cornyn, without his primary residence, is at $130,000? What kind of fiscal moron has that low of a net worth at his age and with his income? The reporting is so stupid as to be worthless.

Nesbit 10-30-10 02:32 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
I'd like to think this is due to having the best and brightest out there working to make the tough decisions while investing in their community wisely and ethically.

jfoobar 10-30-10 08:09 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Having a net worth in excess of $1 million, especially at the average age of U.S. Senators, really isn't that much money. This "millionaire's club" is a pretty silly standard by which to attempt to besmirch the legislative body.


Edit: +y in "silly"

classicman2 10-30-10 08:52 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Twenty-seven Democrats along with 23 Republicans make up the 50 richest in Congress; 30 House members and 20 senators are on the list.

Th0r S1mpson 10-30-10 09:05 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Yeah, not sure this bothers be in the slightest. I'm more concerned with what they do than what they have.

That's not to say that if personal wealth were obtained through certain means it would not be troubling... but the numbers themselves are not bothersome.

classicman2 10-30-10 09:15 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Who is the poorest member of the U. S. Senate?

Red Dog 10-30-10 09:21 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
I would have figured 2/3 or more were millionaires.

Th0r S1mpson 10-30-10 09:26 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by classicman2 (Post 10461466)
Who is the poorest member of the U. S. Senate?

Tough competition there. Or were you referring to finances?

Vibiana 10-30-10 09:52 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Well, I'm glad to see the stimulus package benefited SOMEBODY.

movielib 10-30-10 10:15 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by NORML54601 (Post 10461255)
http://www.rollcall.com/issues/56_42/news/51039-1.html
Also, Herb Kohl is beyond rich, in addition to the Bucks and many other assets, he also owns a chain of dept. stores in WI.

I don't think Kohl owns Kohl's any more. At least he hasn't own a controlling interest since 1972 and hasn't been in management since 1979.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kohl%27s


In 1972 the British-American Tobacco Company's (parent of U.S. subsidiary Brown & Williamson Tobacco Co.) U.S. retail division, BATUS Inc., bought a controlling interest in Kohl's Corp., which at the time operated 50 grocery stores, six department stores, three drug stores and three liquor stores.[6] The Kohl family, led by Allen and Herb Kohl, continued to manage the company. The family left the management in 1979, and Herb Kohl became a United States Senator and owner of the Milwaukee Bucks. The firm then expanded Kohl's presence from 10 to 39 stores in Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana. The grocery stores were sold to A&P in 1983, operating under the name Kohl's II, but the last of them were closed in 2003.
But Herb Kohl being ranked as the poorest member of Congress is hilarious. Since Ted Kennedy died, he is probably the second richest after John Kerry who married the Heinz money.

Sean O'Hara 10-30-10 10:32 AM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
Only half? I would've pegged the number much higher. After all, we know they're crooks, so why shouldn't they be successful crooks?

kvrdave 10-30-10 12:08 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by Red Dog (Post 10461474)
I would have figured 2/3 or more were millionaires.

I figured it would be nearly all of them. Given their salary and all their expenses they get paid for them, it seems nearly impossible not to have a net worth of at least a million at their age. In fact, it's embarrassing. I suppose the bulk could be in retirement accounts and primary residence (and art, etc. that they don't include).

Red Dog 10-30-10 01:10 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by kvrdave (Post 10461642)
I figured it would be nearly all of them. Given their salary and all their expenses they get paid for them, it seems nearly impossible not to have a net worth of at least a million at their age. In fact, it's embarrassing. I suppose the bulk could be in retirement accounts and primary residence (and art, etc. that they don't include).

They aren't counting retirement accts and home/property equity? That's bizarre. :hscratch: What the heck are they counting? Cash and stock/bond holdings (not in a retirement acct)?

But then I remember discussion re: Joe Biden's net worth in 2008 and it was surprisingly low for someone who had been a Senator for over 30 years.

X 10-30-10 01:33 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
This is why there will never be a wealth tax.

kvrdave 10-30-10 01:42 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by Red Dog (Post 10461715)
They aren't counting retirement accts and home/property equity? That's bizarre. :hscratch: What the heck are they counting? Cash and stock/bond holdings (not in a retirement acct)?

But then I remember discussion re: Joe Biden's net worth in 2008 and it was surprisingly low for someone who had been a Senator for over 30 years.



The financial disclosure process also shields certain assets from public view, including primary or secondary residences that do not produce income, as well as artwork, antiques or other collectibles not held for investment purposes. Payments from federal retirement accounts and Social Security also are exempt from the reporting requirements.
Doesn't include secondary residence either. But based on their reports you'd think none of them could afford one. :lol:

Venusian 10-30-10 02:25 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by kvrdave (Post 10461642)
I figured it would be nearly all of them. Given their salary and all their expenses they get paid for them, it seems nearly impossible not to have a net worth of at least a million at their age. In fact, it's embarrassing. I suppose the bulk could be in retirement accounts and primary residence (and art, etc. that they don't include).

I was thinking the same thing. Any of them who've served more than one term, should be close to being a millionaire unless they are giving a ton of money away.

kvrdave 10-30-10 02:46 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by Venusian (Post 10461806)
I was thinking the same thing. Any of them who've served more than one term, should be close to being a millionaire unless they are giving a ton of money away.

And from those that have made their returns available, they don't. They would rather give tons of our money away. :lol:

Dr Mabuse 10-30-10 02:49 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
The Monied Aristocracy...

Superboy 10-30-10 07:48 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by classicman2 (Post 10461466)
Who is the poorest member of the U. S. Senate?

It had to have been Obama when was in the Senate. He kept asking people for change.

Superboy 10-30-10 07:50 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 

Originally Posted by kvrdave (Post 10461642)
I figured it would be nearly all of them. Given their salary and all their expenses they get paid for them, it seems nearly impossible not to have a net worth of at least a million at their age. In fact, it's embarrassing. I suppose the bulk could be in retirement accounts and primary residence (and art, etc. that they don't include).

I'd be more worried if they didn't have money. People who can't even bother to manage their own expenses and income shouldn't be trusted with the government's.

kvrdave 10-30-10 08:38 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
They don't seem to have money, and it does bother me.

Superboy 10-30-10 09:37 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
:lol:

I guess as a business person, you know the difference between "wealth" and "net worth"

kvrdave 10-30-10 10:01 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
I do. It seems the only time the Senators move up is when a relative dies, the cash out retirement funds that weren't previously counted, or they get married.

It would be nice to see a few create some wealth.

Nugent 10-30-10 11:00 PM

Re: More than half US Senators are now millionaires
 
I find it troubling when I have a net worth greater than 30% of the senators and I have never inherited jack!

The fact that so few at their ages with their positions arenít worth a million is rather pathetic.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:50 AM.


Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.