Thanks to the advent of the 24-hour news cycle, a number of channels have made a point to cover politics almost around the clock. It's getting difficult to tell if this is a good thing or a bad thing. On the one hand, you would think the average American is able to be more informed on the political process than they've ever been. On the other hand, many of these 24-hour news networks have dissolved into little more than shouting matches "across the aisle", where one would think that politicians and talking heads are under the impression that how correct they are is equivalent to how loud they are. Not to mention the fact that you apparently earn bonus points on these networks if you interrupt someone while they're talking.
Yes, we have a bigger scope into who represents our government, but we're also given networks like Fox News (Republican/Conservative) and MSNBC (Democrat/Liberal) that don't simply give you the straight facts, but they give you the political news with a political slant. These channels don't inform you so much as they tell you what to think. Others who are already set in their opinions can watch networks like these simply to have confirmation on what they already believe to be true, whether or not they may be wrong. Despite being divided by party lines, these networks have one big thing in common:
They love to pick on the other guys - and they won't let it go for weeks at a time. This has allowed a select number of politicians to always be in the news, for better or for worse. If one side starts picking on a politician, the other side is there to defend them. You end up with two channels all talking about the same people. Let's take a look at these individuals who have become constant topics of discussion in the political arena.
Note: We have not forgotten about Sarah Palin. Despite being involved in the world of politics, she does not actually hold a political office.
12 Jeb Bush
Net Worth: $1.3 Million
Jeb Bush is in and out of the news with some frequency as his family is a well-known and prominent American family. The Bushes have even been referred to as "the most successful political dynasty in American history." Jeb has most recently made the news as a serious contender for the Republican presidential nominee in 2016. Along with Scott Walker, Bush is one of the two most likely candidates to represent the Republican Party in the race for the presidency. It's very possible Bush won't be the only recognizable name in the next election, as Hillary Clinton is appearing to be the most likely nominee for the Democratic Party.
11 Lindsey Graham
Net Worth: $1.5 Million
Graham gets ribbed quite a bit on comedy news shows like Comedy Central's The Daily Show and he even gets a lot of hecklers from his own party for not being conservative enough. Graham has been a South Carolina Senator for some time and is well-known for his willingness to work across party lines on heavily divisive issues like climate change and tax reform. Despite working across the lines on some issues, he does have a reputation as a war hawk, meaning he'll usually favor going to war over having a debate on war. He is also known for being rather opposed to the Tea Party, stating that the Republican Party should be more inclusive and distance themselves from the very hard-right sub-party.
10 Rand Paul
Net Worth: $2.5 Million
Rand Paul is a Senator from Kentucky that has been in the news quite a bit recently. For starters, he's a Tea Party supporter. Let's face it; the Tea Party makes sure they get plenty of airtime. He was also outed and mocked for a speech on abortion where he brought up eugenics and lifted portions of his speech straight from the Wikipedia page for the film Gattaca. He's also known for making extremist and paranoia-inducing comments like, "the President is plotting against the American People." Some analysts think Paul is a likely candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, but as stated earlier, this is more likely to go to Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, and maybe...
9 Ted Cruz
Net Worth: $3.5 Million
Ted Cruz, a junior State Senator for Texas, has very recently made the news for cleaning up as the most favored candidate for the Republican presidential nominee (in Texas) along with Scott Walker. Rick Perry and Jeb Bush weren't far behind, while list-maker Rand Paul hovered around dead last with names like Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee.
Cruz also tends to be brought up as the butt of a number of jokes on networks like MSNBC and The Daily Show. Cruz has grown a bit of a reputation for insisting that any hecklers at his speeches are paid operatives of the Obama Administration sent to silence him. While it seems obvious to a rational person that Cruz is most likely kidding, there are unfortunately a lot of "dimmer" Americans that probably believe the statements.
8 Chris Christie
Net Worth: $4 Million
Turn on MSNBC or Real Time with Bill Maher and you're definitely going to hear something bad about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. It all started with "Bridgegate", a political scandal that states political appointees of Christie's closed down lanes on the George Washington Bridge toll road to hinder traffic towards New York. Christie insists he had no roll or knowledge on the closures that were said to be a threat to public safety. Accusers have not been able to come up with a clear motive as to why the closures even happened. Some believe it was an attempt for Christie to get back at Mark Sokolich for not endorsing him in the gubernatorial elections.
Christie is also in the news as a Republican choice for the presidency. Unfortunately for Christie, success in this area seems very unlikely.
7 John Boehner
Net Worth: $5 Million
It would be extremely difficult for John Boehner to not constantly be in the headlines. After all, the man is the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Boehner was also in the news recently for getting a little angry with reporters that asked him a relatively honest question.
Boehner recently said the only thing holding back a bill for funding Homeland Security was Democrats wanting to vote "No." A reporter pointed out that this was most likely due to the fact that unnecessary Immigration literature was attached to the bill that Democrats obviously wouldn't favor. The reporter asked why Republicans wouldn't have left the Immigration literature out of the bill so both parties would agree on the main issue. Boehner kept getting increasingly flustered by the line of questioning and the video went viral.
6 Mitch McConnell
Net Worth: $9.8 Million
McConnell is another Republican that is constantly the butt of jokes on The Daily Show. A rather constant jab used by Jon Stewart is a comparison to the tortoise in the famous Looney Toons "Tortoise and the Hair" cartoon with Bugs Bunny.
All joking aside, McConnell deserves most of his exposure as a politician. He's been an active part in politics for decades, going all the way back to the 1960s. McConnell also holds a political science degree as opposed to the "obligatory" law degree. Currently, McConnell serves as senior State Senator of Kentucky along with list-maker. Whether you agree with his politics or not, you can't say the man hasn't worked hard to get where he's at.
5 President Barack Obama
Net Worth: $12.2 Million
It was only a matter of time before we'd get to Barrack Obama. Obviously the President of the United States of America is constantly in the headlines. Half the time he's being attacked so viciously you'd think he's a demon, and other times he's getting so much praise you'd think he was an all-powerful god or even a rock star. Rational people who don't define their very existence by who they voted for in the last election probably understand that Obama falls somewhere in the middle.
One of his most recent headline making appearances was a call for new rules regarding brokers handling retirement accounts.
4 Elizabeth Warren
Net Worth: $8.75 - 14.5 Million
One of the reasons that Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren's net worth has a wide range is due to the fact her money tends to be used against her by her detractors. She might be the only member on the list that makes headlines specifically for their wealth. Warren has a reputation as a fighter for the "little man." The argument is, she wouldn't be rich if she actually cared for the poor. This has created a number of different claims in regards to her actual worth. People who support Warren try to downplay it, suggesting it's even under $5 million. People who dislike Warren blow it up to around $20 million. More reputable and non-biased sources put it somewhere between $8.75 million and $14.5 million.
Warren also makes headlines as a possible candidate in the Democrat's race for the presidency. Warren has said that she does not desire to run in 2016.
3 John McCain
Net Worth: $21 Million
John McCain made headlines in the past for attempting to run for President, and then eventually getting the nomination. McCain ran with Sarah Palin as a Vice President, which is said to have actually hurt his chances for a win against Obama (due to her lack of experience). As the Palins began to become reality television stars and slowly fall out of favor with the Republican Party (thanks to a number of train wreck speeches from Sarah), McCain has never been able to really shake himself free of constant media attention that results from his association with Palin.
Palin can't be entirely blamed. McCain very recently made headlines by stating that he is ashamed of his country. That's a sentiment you don't normally hear coming from the GOP. Needless to say, the media is all over it.
2 Hillary Clinton
Net Worth: $21.5 Million
Hilary has become a political powerhouse over the years. She was the First Lady for two terms, she went against Barrack Obama for the Democrat nominee for the presidency in 2008, and now she's the likeliest candidate to run for President for the Democrats. She served as a Senator in New York and as Secretary of the State under President Obama. She's definitely made her presence known since she and her husband, ex-President Bill Clinton, left the White House.
Clinton has very recently made headlines when it was exposed women on her staff generally made only $0.72 for every $1.00 paid to men. One Internet "news" outlet has already referred to it as, "Hilary Clinton's War On Women."
1 Colin Powell
Net Worth: $45 Million
Colin Powell is another one of those rare politicians that would like to see the two parties working together "across the aisle" in an attempt to get more done through compromise instead of stone-walling each other. Powell is a retired four-star general, former Secretary of the State, a former National Security Advisor, and a Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. While he doesn't hold office now, he's stayed within the world of politics as a speaker and supporter of other candidates.
Powell was once a presidential hopeful in the past but he didn't want to run. It was projected that he would have been a favorite and easily taken the presidency, and this was back in the 1990s. Ever since, his name is always thrown around as a possible Republican nominee for President around election time.
Powell also made headlines when he endorsed Barrack Obama for President as opposed to someone from his own party. He made headlines again (less than a year ago) when he said he had "no buyer's remorse" for doing so. He also made headlines for stating that his own party was "heading for a brick wall" unless the party stopped ostracizing itself from minorities and women voters.