$355 million puts Rep. Issa at top of 50 richest lawmakers
August 20th, 2013
02:41 PM ET
10 years ago

$355 million puts Rep. Issa at top of 50 richest lawmakers

Washington (CNN) – How many members of Congress does it take to count to a billion?

The top 12. At least according to The Hill's annual calculation of the 50 wealthiest members. Newly topped out by California Rep. Darrell Issa's $355.4 million, adding up his wealth with the next 11 richest of his compatriots totals $1.02 billion.

Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee and self-described Republican watchdog of the Obama administration, this year beat out Texas Republican Rep. Michael McCaul, last year's richest member of Congress. For his part, McCaul is worth $101.9 million, most of which comes from family trusts.

According to The Hill, Issa's wealth ballooned a few zeroes after he shed some $75 million in liabilities last year. With several huge investment funds worth as much as $50 million apiece, Issa's wealth comes from his role in founding Directed Electronics, creator of the Viper anti-theft system for cars.

Issa, McCaul and their fellow Republicans make up 29 of the 50 richest members of Congress. Republicans have held a majority in the wealth category for three years now. Most of the top 50 list comes from the lower chamber, with 37 in the House of Representatives and 13 in the U.S. Senate.

While the first two richest are Republicans, spot number three goes to a Democrat, Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia. A tech investor, he's worth $88.5 million.

Worth noting, wealth reported by The Hill represents the minimum net worth of each member of Congress, since they are only required to report ranges. The Hill's calculation was based on the lower value of the reporting range, meaning each member could be worth more than the value ascribed to them and it could take far less than 12 to count to $1 billion.

Filed under: Congress • Darrell Issa • Mark Warner • Mike McCaul
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. California Gary

    Wow.......he sure sold a lot of car alarms! If anyone were to take a real close look at his finances, no telling what creepy things they would find in there.

    August 20, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  2. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Only in America can a car thief, arsonist, insurance fraud perpetrator and illegal hand gun possessor rise to this level and then make a career out of destroying other people.

    August 20, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. Winston Smith

    This much wealth, and yet so stupid. It's apparent that to become one of means, doesn't take a lot of brains.

    August 20, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  4. Wake up People!

    Being a thief sure pays well.

    No you dirt poor republicans can see for yourself, Issa could care less about the economy, he is set for life. As are his spawn.

    August 20, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  5. Dutch/Bad Newz aka Take Back The House

    How much of that wealth is tied to his criminal activity of the past?

    August 20, 2013 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  6. Boomer in Mo

    And he intends to keep every cent and get much much more.

    August 20, 2013 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  7. Name Uche Agonsi

    Just imagine what wealth has done to Democracy in US. The rich has refused to pay tax, undertake medicare for the poor, & even wants student loans to be inaccessible to the poor. Uptil date they complain against Aids to Catherina Victims........ The question is what benefits do they desire for the poor in the Communal Relationship.

    August 20, 2013 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  8. Abbey

    "Please step away from the car!"

    Democrats hate successful business stories.

    August 20, 2013 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  9. more bs

    no wonder why repubs are against higher taxes on the wealthy

    August 20, 2013 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  10. Thomas

    Make more criminals , sell more car alarms .

    August 20, 2013 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  11. Arun

    This is why they run for office. They can create and pass bills that help their bank accounts!! Just ask the ones from farm states who hate government hand outs except for farm subsidies they get!! Pure crap!!

    August 20, 2013 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  12. just saying

    gee, where was all this left wing hate for super rich caroline kennedy who never worked a day in her life for what she has? how many jobs did she ever create with her wealth? zero.

    August 20, 2013 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  13. Bob

    Stealing cars, telling lies, and setting fires apparently pays well.

    August 20, 2013 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  14. the hippies were right

    What do you expect with access to legal insider trading, and Issa runs the Oversight Committee. These guys go to bed laughing at us every night.

    August 20, 2013 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  15. America Above the Parties

    How can a super rich man with questional criminal background can stood so looow and endlessly dissecting phony scandal after phony scandal at the tax payer expenses and be the subject of spit-on ridicule by the public is beyond my reasoning.

    August 20, 2013 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  16. Tampa Tim

    He is the epitome of "conflict of interest." We now know why the GOP wants to reduce taxes on the wealthy and let the middle class and poor pay for it.

    August 20, 2013 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    ""Please step away from the car!"

    Democrats hate successful business stories."

    How to succeed in business, the GOP/Teatrolls way:

    Step 1: Jack up your business insurance payout by several hundred thousands of dollars.
    Step 2: Burn the farker down.

    Of course, Issa will very quickly tell you "they didn't prove anything"...totally missing the irony in him saying that in light of the fact that he hasn't proved anything with respect to his accusations against Obama.

    August 20, 2013 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  18. Peppey

    I thought libs were the party of love and respect ??? Look at Kerry, clintstones etc, why is success a dirty word now??
    The few times I have heard him, he sounded pretty sharp.

    August 20, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  19. slalom5

    Hillary is worth $21.5 million, and Billy has made over $106 million in speeches alone. Yet their charities are broke. So is Biden.
    Kerry/Heinz ketchup fortune? $194 million before the prenupt. All combined $394 million. Al Gore $300 million, Rockafeller $135 million – Harman $200 million. The Kennedy's fortune combined probably blows the roof of all of the above. Ask them how much they paid in taxes last year.

    August 20, 2013 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  20. Tampa Tim

    "Indicted but never convicted" is the Issa motto.

    August 20, 2013 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  21. Name jk. Sfl. GOP conservatives,the garbage of America.

    Assa, the nazi like stooge of the GOP should have been aborted by his mother and does a disservice to our country,if you think he got this money honestly, I have some beach front property to sell you in ky from McConnell the other GOP crook!!!!!

    August 20, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |