Bay Area lawmakers among the wealthiest in U.S.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi: $101 million. Rep. Jerry McNerney: $9,000. OpenSecrets.com: Priceless.

About 47 percent of Congress, or 250 current members of Congress, are millionaires, according to a new study by the Center for Responsive Politics of lawmakers’ personal financial disclosure forms from 2010.

The Bay Area beats the national figure, where eight of its 13 regionally based federal lawmakers top the $1 million mark in assets and liabilities.

No. 8 nationally out of 530 members and the wealthiest of the Bay Area legislators, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, reported an average net worth of $101 million.

The poorest member was Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Pleasanton, with an average net worth of $9,000 and a national ranking of No. 494.

Talk about a gap between the haves and have nots.

Keep in mind, the disclosure numbers do not include personal property such as residences, artwork or retirement accounts but do include the spouses’ income and investments. The forms contain vast value ranges, however, which makes it impossible to make precise estimates, says the Center for Responsive Politics.

For the other Bay Area colleages and their national rankings:

  • No. 12 — Sen. Dianne Feinstein, $69 million
  • No. 49 — Rep. Jackie Speier, $12.5 million
  • No. 72 — Rep. John Garamendi, $6.9 million
  • No. 110 — Rep. Pete Stark, $3.9 million
  • No. 130 – Sen. Barbara Boxer, $3.5 million
  • No. 192 — Rep. Anna Eshoo, $1.8 million
  • No. 201 — Rep. Mike Thompson, $1.7 million
  • No. 211 — Rep. Zoe Lofgren, $1.5 million
  • No. 304 — Rep. George Miller, $668,000
  • No. 308 — Rep. Mike Honda, $639,505
  • No. 343 — Rep. Lynn Woolsey, $490,505
  • No. 370 – Rep. Barbara Lee, $392,503

Read the full 530-member list at the Center for Responsive Politics site.



Lisa Vorderbrueggen

  • RR, Senile Columnist

    Ain’t it cool that losers like Woolsey and Lee, neither of whom ever accomplished anything greater than re-election, have been good savers?

  • rew

    I think the fact Jerry McNerny isn’t rich like some of these other Congressman is a plus. He’s a regular guy, came up hard way, got elected to Congress – sort of accidentally, as I recall he wasn’t the choice of the big shots. He sort of came out of nowhere to win that seat. But he’s a good guy, that’s shines through – people like him, I like him, it’s great to see somebody like this serve in Congress. He keeps being re-elected, I think, because he’s attuned to the hopes and dreams of regular working folks. Congress shouldn’t be the preserve of rich plutocrats, we need people in Congress who can relate with regular working people. McNerny does, no question, so I think this effort to defeat McNerny by Republicans – backed by CEO’s, oil company executives, and DC lobbyists – the usual barfo DC big shots – isn’t going to fly. Jerry McNerny’s rocks, and I’m proud to be supporting him in his bid to get re-elected.

  • Elwood

    “Rep. Jerry McNerney: $9,000.”

    What does it tell you about a 60 year old man who’s broke on his ass?

  • Ralph Hoffmann

    “A penny saved is a penny earned.” Founder, Ben Franklin

  • Common Tater

    I guess Jerry is too darn stupid to get rich.

  • Rick K.

    How did “Live Shot Garamendi” get so wealthy as a career politician? Perhaps he owes much of his wealth to his mysterious job as “Washington, DC investment partner” to Yucaipa Companies from 1998 to 2001. Forbes magazine did an expose in 1999 that showed that Garamendi earned big bucks at Yucaipa for doing practically nothing. Look at http://www.forbes.com/global/1999/1227/0226024a.html
    The Forbes expose links Garamendi’s “Washington, DC investment partner” job to the Executive Life insurance scandal when he was California Insurance Commissioner. Garamendi is the worst type of 1 Percenter. He masquerades as a populist while he privately profits like the very people he publicly derides. His son John Garamendi Jr. got a $210,000 UC job (the #3 job at UC Merced) when he was just 34 or so years old. Look at
    No doubt Daddy’s membership in the “political class” played a major role in Jr.’s big job. UC students, faculty and staff are suffering today because people like the Garamendis get top UC jobs through nepotism and cronyism. UC Davis students and residents of Vacaville, Fairfield and points north should unite in 2012 and oust Garamendi from Congress and replace him with someone like Colusa County Supervisor Kim Vann.