Members of Congress -- especially senators -- are far richer than the average Americans they represent, the Center for Responsive Politics said Wednesday.

About 60% of first-year U.S. senators and 40% of House of Representatives freshmen are worth at least $1 million, an amount just 1% of Americans can claim to have, according to the center's analysis of federal personal financial disclosures.

The median wealth for a first-year House of Representatives member is about $570,000, while the median wealth for a Senate freshman is almost $4 million, the research group said on its website, OpenSecrets.org. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) is worth $95 million, making him the richest freshman Congressman, according to the center.

"Some are Democrats, some are Republicans, many are Tea Party conservatives while others are unabashedly liberal," Dan Auble, who manages the center's personal-financial-disclosure database, said in a statement. "What unites these freshmen is that, on balance, they're rich."

Popular stock investments among new members of Congress include Citigroup (C) and Wells Fargo (WFC), both of which received federal bailout money, as well as health-care companies such as Merck (MRK), Pfizer (PFE) and CVS Caremark (CVS).

With Blumenthal factored in, Senate freshmen in the 112th Congress -- elected in November -- are richer than the 111th Congress's senators, on average, while first-year House members were worth slightly less than their predecessors. Diane Lynn Black (R-Tenn.), Rick Berg (R-N.D.) and Blake Farenthold (R-Texas) all have more than $30 million in personal wealth, according to the Center.


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linmarco

America in the main where your day to day physical survival is concerned is about self sufficiency which breaks down into two parts. They are basic self sufficiency and enhanced self sufficiency. The first involves people debt free, where assets are greater than liabilities, savings to cover about a year of unemployment, decent holdings, and able to manage their financial affairs with no problems. They are not millionaires, many are close, but they are comfortable. The latter group involves millionaires and above. Anyone outside these two groups is not safe. The poor can break into either of these but it's probably easier to enter the basic ranks. Castigating the wealthy solves nothing and neither does denigrating the poor. Ours is a country where initiative is the highway to travel in an automobile made of perserverance and headed to the town of self sufficiency.
This is a car that runs on planning, self sacrifice, diligence, and discipline.

March 11 2011 at 3:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to linmarco's comment
mommy

Agreed! Coming from a lower blue collar background and having worked my way into a place of upper middle class stature I can say that hard work (both my husband and I worked two jobs for many years) living within your means, having fewer children (we have one) and saving money instead of spending all of it is what will help you get out of the lower class.
Blaming big government while you are smoking a joint, robbing a bank and having 12 children is NOT going to help raise you out of the lower class. Hard work and being responsible is the only way.
This goes for ALL races. No more excuses from people saying it's because of their color or because they were raised poor. People fail because they do not work hard enough.

August 03 2011 at 10:55 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Holly

I see our government as more of a Kleptocracy "rule by thieves"

March 11 2011 at 1:33 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Theresa

Well, so much for our‘ public servants.’ Some have said that their wealth will inhibit the purported"influence that lobbyists and others may and could have upon their office. What ever happened to honesty and their oath of office? I am not against personal wealth, but when they vote for another pay raise? Why do they need it? I believe that our senators and congressmen alike should take a major pay cut. And if‘obama-care' is good enough for us? It is good enough for them. After all, they are public servants.
TerryDould

March 11 2011 at 7:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mick

I guess we have become a Hamiltonian style Plutocracy. A government of the wealthy, by the wealthy, and for the wealthy. that is why they bailed out the rich and let the poor and middle class go homeless

March 11 2011 at 1:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Mick's comment
mommy

Yup and the nation of have-nots have become complacent. They have no one to blame but themselves.

August 03 2011 at 10:56 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Pete

Democratic representation for the people, by the people.....bullcocky! As Bullworth said, "the white man has more in common with the black man than he does with the rich man".....wake up America (at least middle class America).....you're a slave Neo!...and the rich man owns you! You're not in the club...and no, you will never be.

March 11 2011 at 12:23 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Don and Marj

Just read the posting of the family that came to AMERICA in 1955. They knew that you have to save to buy what you need, and not buy everything YOU Want!!Most of us working people would be a lot better off, if we SAVED MONEY out of each pay check it is possible, Cell Phone,Cable TV, Let go of them save the money.!!!!! Don't let the TV ad.or some bragging neighbor cause you to feel that your being deprived of living the good life. Notice how many people are now losing their homes after bring fooled into thinking you could afford a $250,000 on $40,000 or less income.
Want everything right now, I am wondering if we are going into the tank again very soon? Sure hope not!!!

March 10 2011 at 10:17 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
procompdynamics

But they feel our pain,yeah right.

March 10 2011 at 7:28 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
somedont

Why would anyone worth $95 Million even want to work? Well, because money without power doesn't make you safe from the government. You need both to stay ahead. (Just ask Leona Hemsley ... if she was still alive.)

March 10 2011 at 6:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Dave Lewis

The problem here is not that they have money, it's that because they have money they are diconnected from the reality of what most Americans have to deal with. They tell us America has the best medical system in the world, they don't know that most of us can't afford it. They tell us how well Americans are housed, because their house is great, they just don't know, and don't appreciate, that the most common "house" in rural south east America is the single or double wide trailer. They really do believe the nonsense they espouse, because they don't appreicate what the rest of "us" have to live with and deal with daily.

March 10 2011 at 6:38 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Dave Lewis's comment
vclen

I agree. And from there one should ask..."how can they represent us when they aren't like us?"

March 10 2011 at 7:52 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
LEE Resolution

dgrantslick
2:05 PM Mar 10, 2011


You are one of the lucky ones who made it,but what we have to be careful of is that trhe opportunity to survive and better ones self are always there, for my children and yours.
**********
Luck has nothing to do with it, save the better you become at a skill or profession, the 'luckier' you get

March 10 2011 at 4:47 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply