There are two things that are unique about the 113th Congress. First, there’s a record number of women in the Senate and House of Representatives (20 in the Senate, and 78 in the House). Second, out of the 534 members, 268 had an average net worth of a million dollars or more, making this possibly the richest Congress in history.
While it’s unarguably good news that more women are represented in positions of power in the U.S., it’s still worth noting that they remain a small percentage of the total number of Congress. In fact, they only represent about 18% of the total positions. But there’s still room for optimism. Of the Congresswomen, over a quarter of those are newcomers, meaning they were newly elected, giving hope that perhaps we will eventually see more and more women joining their ranks in the long term. It’s slow, but at least it’s progress.
And since we’re talking about one of the richest Congresses in history, it’s also worth looking at how many of the richest members of Congress are women. Sadly, not many. According to Roll Call’s annual list of the top 50 wealthiest members of Congress, which considers both assets and liabilities, only nine on the list are female. So who are these nine women who stand out in a group composed primarily of wealthy men? Well, they come from both sides of the political spectrum, Republican and Democrat alike. And they come from all over this great country, too.
It’s worth noting that spouses’ independently-owned assets aren’t necessarily expressed on Senate disclosure forms after the $1 million mark, so depending on how the wealth of these women is shared and divided with their husbands, some of them might actually be even wealthier than they appear to be on paper.
9. Sen. Kay Hagan (D- North Carolina) – Net Worth: $8.06 million
Senator Kay Hagan is a newcomer to the Top 50 Richest Congressperson’s list, and she premiers at number 45 in the overall rankings. Her wealth, though considerable, is tiny compared to some others on the list – she made a large proportion of her money thanks to her stake in Anchuca Holdings LLC, which she reportedly received as a gift. Her other assets include a stake in BNC Bancorp, and a stake in a Davis, North Carolina fishing club.