The 25 richest members of Congress and the 25 “poorest” members of Congress break fairly evenly along partisan lines, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics.
Of the top 25 wealthiest members of Congress, 13 were Republicans and 12 were Democrats.
As for the “poorest” members of Congress, 10 were Republicans and 15 were Democrats.
The findings, which were based on the lawmakers’ 2010 financial disclosures, list Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL) as having a net worth of – $4,732,002, making him the poorest member of Congress.
At the opposite end of the financial spectrum is Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) whose listed net worth of $448,125,017 puts him at the top of the Congressional wealth chart.
Recent studies have shown that the wealth gap between elected officials and average Americans has widened considerably in recent years.
Earlier this month the Washington Post reported that:
Between 1984 and 2009, the median net worth of a member of the House more than doubled, according to the analysis of financial disclosures, from $280,000 to $725,000 in inflation-adjusted 2009 dollars, excluding home equity.
Over the same period, the wealth of an American family has declined slightly, with the comparable median figure sliding from $20,600 to $20,500, according to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics from the University of Michigan.
The growing wealth gap between voters and members of Congress has placed renewed interest on ensuring that members of Congress are not using their access to private information to enrich themselves personally.
The congressional wealth rankings revealed that the author of the recently introduced RESTRICT (Restoring Ethical Standards, Transparency, and Responsibility in Congressional Trading) Act to ban congressional insider trading, Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI), is listed among the 25 poorest members of Congress.
“I want to keep members of Congress honest,” Rep. Duffy told Breitbart News.
The RESTRICT Act would require members of Congress to place all their assets in a blind trust or submit to a three day public disclosure requirement for any and all investments.
Congress is expected to take up anti-insider trading legislation in the early part of 2012.