John Linder, Tom Price, Johnny Isakson among richest in Congress

The Hill  is out with its list of the 50 richest politicians on Capitol Hill, and it includes three Georgia Republicans: Rep. Tom Price, Rep. John Linder and Sen. Johnny Isakson. No Georgia Democrats are among the group, although seven of the top 10 are Democrats.

Before breaking out the top 50 in a slideshow, the Hill  provided this overview:

The wealthiest members of Congress grew richer in 2009 even as the economy struggled to recover from a deep recession…

The 50 wealthiest lawmakers were worth almost $1.4 billion in 2009, about $85.1 million more than 12 months earlier, according to The Hill’s annual review of lawmakers’ financial disclosure forms.

Total assets for the 50 wealthiest lawmakers in 2009 was $1.5 billion — that’s actually a nearly $36 million drop from a year ago. But lawmakers reduced their liabilities by even more, cutting debts by $120 million last year.

Price, a 6th  District physician from Roswell, ranks No. 32 with $8.5 million. The Hill said Price’s wealth rose $1.4 million in 2009 after several investment funds increased in value. He also owns property on St. Simons and has invested in a Roswell medical office building.

Linder, a Republican from the 7th District, ranks No. 35 with $7.9 million. The Hill said Linder, who is retiring from Congress, benefited from the investment prowess of  his wife, Lynne. A money market fund doubled in value from 2008 to 2009 and the couple also reduced liabilities. The Hill said much of Linder’s wealth is in Mississippi farmland.

Isakson, a Republican who spent years in real estate, ranks No. 46 with $6.4 million. The Hill said the bulk of Isakson’s holdings are in Rabun County property. He also has investments in apartments throughout Georgia and a condo in Washington. Isakson also holds stock in Starbucks, Visa and other companies, the Hill.com said.

For the record, the richest politician  is Democrat Sen. John Kerry of Massachussets, whose wealth, thanks in large part to his wife, climbed $20 million between 2008 and 2009, to $188.6 million. Kerry’s wife, Teresa, is an heiress to the Heinz ketchup fortune.

65 comments Add your comment

JD

September 1st, 2010
9:30 am

This goes to show that it is hard for an average Joe to become a congressman to represent our state. So why again, do you think these people have our best interest?

Jimnalph

September 1st, 2010
9:43 am

Yes it is a bit hard for the avg Joe to get to DC. But throughout our country’s history, wealthy people seem to have dominated politics (e.g. Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, and on and on). Why is that? Because first, they care and second, their wealth makes it possible for them to devote the time and energy necessary to do the work. All of us avg Joe’s just don’t have that time to devote because we are too busy taking care of our families. That is not a bad thing. The vast majority of the wealthy were avg Joes at some point in their life. I know that Isakson and Linder were both avg Joes taking care of their families. Don’t know Price that well but suspect he was at some point too.

Jimnalph

September 1st, 2010
9:46 am

PS Heck I wish I could have invented ketchup! or at least had an ancestor who did and been a member of the lucky sperm club.

Average sucker

September 1st, 2010
10:39 am

Just goes to show you you need money to run for Congress. If we had 100% public fiananicing of elections. it would level the playing field so that anyone could run for office. It would also prevent lobbyists from being in a politician’s pocket. which could reduce the vast amounts pork spending on special interests. Billions could be saved under such a system.

Peepeye

September 1st, 2010
11:18 am

Isn’t that the entire purpose of becoming a politican…………….to enrich yourself and protect your interests?

Politicans were the kids at school who excelled at recess. They could really work a playground and network.

They could get things done and make things happen, especially for themselves.

You can admire their Machiavellian tactics, but you always know that there is never one altruistic bone in their body.

Public servant, yeah right…………….the only person they serve is themselves and their own personal interests.

When I’m sworn in as a duly elected official at 9:00 a.m., I expect to become a millionaire by 4:00 p.m. on that same day. Kickbacks, bribes, influence peddling, I’m open to all offers. LOL!!

HOYT28

September 1st, 2010
11:18 am

You see the republicans has the money and that’s why they oppose helping the common citizens of this country who are loosing jobs and homes daily, they don’t care.

retireds

September 1st, 2010
11:20 am

Ahhhh, and now you know why these Republicans don’t want the tax cuts for the wealthy to expire. And we thought they were thinking of Joe and Jane America. I hope the regular person in the street will soon begin to figure out what these guys are all about. Remember, follow the $$$$$.

Port in a Storm

September 1st, 2010
11:22 am

What would be really interesting is to compare what these congress members made with what their tax records show. I’ll bet their accountants find lots of creative ways for those big bucks not to be taxed, while those of us who can’t afford our own CPA can barely put food on the table after April 15.

M1

September 1st, 2010
11:24 am

Huh?? “A money market fund doubled in value from 2008 to 2009″!!!

Does Linder have access to some money market fund that is unavailable to every other person on earth.

ricardo

September 1st, 2010
11:24 am

Why, of course, Tommy is rich. What else to do except be an obstacle to any legitimate programs to help his fellow citizens. Rail against all things, except tax breaks and healthcare to maximize profits for his friends. Now,that’s a rich politician.

I can see Russia from my house

September 1st, 2010
11:25 am

Tax cuts for the rich will improve all our lives. I think I just threw up in my mouth a little, okay, a lot.

GB

September 1st, 2010
11:26 am

Hey HOYT28, you might want to actually look at the list before you post about how “Republicans have the money”…of the 50 wealthiest members of Congress, 27 are Democrats and 23 are Republicans. Of the top 10 wealthiest members, 7 Dems to only 3 Republicans. Yeah, only those “evil” Republicans care about making money…keep telling yourself that, that’s the whole reason we’re in this bad of a mess right now, b/c people gave unbridled control to liberal Dems in Congress.

JB

September 1st, 2010
11:26 am

For you Republican bashers, you might want to note that 6 of the wealthiest 10 are DEMOCRATS and 25 of the top 50 are DEMOCRATS. So, the Republicans don’t have a lock on the wealth in the Senate.

Mike10

September 1st, 2010
11:28 am

Now you see these Republican lawmakers are also trying to protect there own financial situations I honestly beleive they can careless about you and me no wonder they dont like Obama he wants to cut the tax break for the wealthy.Figures

GJD

September 1st, 2010
11:28 am

HOYT…..If you actually looked at the list you would see that 27 of the 50 are Democrats. Stopped acting like Republicans are the only people who have money and therefore don’t care about you. Look at Hollywood were Democrats reign. This is one of the wealthiest areas in the country. Stop you’re crying.

Tyler

September 1st, 2010
11:30 am

@GB You said that 6 of the 10 were Democrats. Thats very true, and thats exactly why the Democrats are trying to bring tax cuts to the wealthy!

JackWagon

September 1st, 2010
11:33 am

This article is a good indicator of how well the Republicans are with money (Fiscal Responsibility). Notice that their wealth has been made from investments. The average Joe can do the same thing if we quit buying beer and cigarettes with all of our spare cash. Spend a little more time earning money instead of complaining about not having any. Once we earn it, invest it wisely. We all want to get rich quick instead of working for it. Millionaires don’t get that way overnight. It takes years to get there. That’s years of working and saving. We won’t get rich if we are paying Citibank 32% interest.

ML

September 1st, 2010
11:33 am

THANK YOU GB and JB! The poor me, read only headlines, uneducated comments of the previous posters was making this hardworking, hourly paid, mother of 2 very annoyed.

WealthEnvy

September 1st, 2010
11:34 am

@I can see Russia from my house

What would you have us do? Use the police power of government to forcibly take away the rightfully earned or inherited money of the rich and distribute it to the poor, forever eliminating work ethic and ambition? Once you have a supremely powerful welfare state, the desire to better yourself goes away, becausethe government does everything for you.

ML

September 1st, 2010
11:36 am

Hey Mike10…learn proper grammer and spelling and you might get a little more respect for your opinion.

No More Incumbents

September 1st, 2010
11:40 am

OK . They got rich. It is time to move them all out.
If you really want term limits we are going to have to do it ourselves. Polititians are not going to give up the ‘Gravy Train” voluntarily.

WealthEnvy

September 1st, 2010
11:41 am

I heard the other day that we should impose term limits on all congressmen. Two terms, at most. One term in office, then one term in prison.

To All you Haters

September 1st, 2010
11:42 am

Ironic that people always begrudge individuals who prosper while they suffer. While most utilize their assets on wasteful personal pleasure, some risk their assets in investments and make profits are somehow always labeled as scaming the system. It is human nature to have one’s own best interest in mind, and if you were qualified enough to get elected then most likely you would have personal wealth aswell. As long as they pay their taxes no one should express displeasure at others financial successes. However, in this day and age where everyone is in it for their self don’t be mad becuase some invest and some merely consume and dwindle their cophers. I work for the benifit of myself, family, friends, and then the community. These elected officials had their wealth way before they ever became congressmen and hardly made a salary that made them rich. (Although, they are overpaid over their lifetime after their service to the country as an elected official) Instead of being mad at their prosperity, why don’t you just work harder so that you can pay more taxes and also give more of what you earn to taxes. Follow the lack of $$$$ and you will find those who are the most bitter and selfish about their own failures.

I can see Russia from my house

September 1st, 2010
11:43 am

WealthEnvy: What’s all that malarkey got to do with tax cuts?

H Robbins

September 1st, 2010
11:45 am

Oddly enough, Dr. Price’s facebook monkey has not posted this congratulatory tidbit on his FB page. I wonder why not? He always posts videos of TP’s punditry appearances on Fox News, and his speeches at the Tea Party rallies. I’m sure he does those things on his “own” time, though, not while he’s being paid to work.

Johnny Poor Mouth

September 1st, 2010
11:47 am

If you can see Russia from your house, it is evidently not to far of a trip. So why don’t you move there?

I can see Russia from my house

September 1st, 2010
11:47 am

Now Johnny Poor Mouth, let’s not get irritable.

Johnny Poor Mouth

September 1st, 2010
11:52 am

The rich didn’t get rich because they were in office. They were already rich. For the life of me, I cannot imagine why any sane person…sane enough to make money…would want to run for public office any way. All they do is get to serve whinners with their hands out for everyone else’s money.

WealthEnvy

September 1st, 2010
11:55 am

QUOTE: “Tax cuts for the rich will improve all our lives. I think I just threw up in my mouth a little, okay, a lot.”

As I read that, a understanding that sarcasm does not show up well in print, I see someone who thinks that tax cuts for the wealthy are a horrible idea. I’ve been through this discussion before. People who say things like that tend to think that cutting spending would be worse than cutting taxes. Also, your comment about throwing up in your mouth seemed to show your position about opposing this idea. To wit, I asked if we should use the power of government to forcibly take from those who have (this is what taxes already are, and if you don’t believe me, then don’t pay taxes for a while) and give to those who have not (this is Obama’s notion of “spreading the wealth around”).

Understand, though, that most of these evil rich who would be subject to higher taxes (allowing the Bush-era tax cuts to expire, the taxes under Obamacare) are often small business owners who report their business income as personal income. Small business account for a large portion of the jobs in this country. Once you start taking more of the rightfully earned income from the businesses, the aforementioned small business owner will not be able to hire more workers.

Of course, I could be misreading your statement. If so, I apologize.

HA

September 1st, 2010
11:55 am

And we wonder why they don’t represent the interest of common folk…. they don’t know any! These guy should be required to show proof of having at least one working class friend… yeah I know, why too much to ask :)

DDAY

September 1st, 2010
11:59 am

retireds wrote: “Ahhhh, and now you know why these Republicans don’t want the tax cuts for the wealthy to expire. And we thought they were thinking of Joe and Jane America. I hope the regular person in the street will soon begin to figure out what these guys are all about. Remember, follow the $$$$$.”

This is close to the dumbest thing I’ve ever read. The majority of the wealthy in the article were Dems. The Democrats are the ones who play themselves off as the “caring, open-minded” group. You have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about and should be barred from discussing politics.

BABY SAY

September 1st, 2010
12:05 pm

GOOD FUR DEM. NO RONG MAKIN MUNY. DIS IS AMERICAN WAY BABY!!!!! ONLY PROBLIM IS JELLOUSY…..

H Robbins

September 1st, 2010
12:07 pm

Who has the biggest case of “wealth envy?” (a) Those who work their behinds off just to remain in the middle class, trying to provide at least as much for their children as they had, but working twice as hard to do it? Or (b) those who aren’t rich, but hope one day to be rich, and think that sucking up to and defending tax breaks for the wealthiest 3% of Americans will some how gain them favor from the “You’re gonna be rich any day now” Gods?

Travis McGee

September 1st, 2010
12:09 pm

The “average Joe” who works hard and eats out of his lunch box daily is being manipulated by the wealthy. That’s the only way I can understand their Republican vote because Republican policy — tax cuts of the wealthy and other concessions for big business — certainly doesn’t benefit them.

Repbulicans harp or red meat subjects like family values and fundamental religious values and laugh behind their backs at how easy it is to play the electorate like a banjo — like Newt Gingrich said to his wife, “They need to hear what I’ve got to say. It doesn’t matter how I live.”

I certainly understand why the electorate is PO’ed, but don’t understand why they’re PO’ed at the politicians who are trying to help them.

I guess it’s like they say, “No good deed goes unpunished.”

GOP is Gone

September 1st, 2010
12:12 pm

Reeks of conflict of interest. I wonder if Kerry had to sign a pre-nup?

Alecia

September 1st, 2010
12:13 pm

Have to wonder how many of the weathly democrats in power have made money from being in on the right deal at the right time, especially now with all the stimulus money floating around. Yeah, public office doesnot pay much and these folks are already wealthy. However, having access to the right ties and being on the inside can make one even wealthier.

Big Marc

September 1st, 2010
12:14 pm

If anything this should contrast that even though many on the list are rich democrats they still favor paying higher taxes for the common good, while our republican brethen wants no part of Progressive Taxation. Also over 80 percent of small businesses make under 250,000 so they wont be seeing their taxes go up

TommyJack

September 1st, 2010
12:16 pm

Kerry has made a career of marrying rich women. And a slug to boot.

God you people are stupid!!

September 1st, 2010
12:16 pm

You can’t live in Washington on what these guys make, THEY ARE ALL ON THE TAKE. The point is to LIMIT government and their power, thats why there is corruption….its 2+2 people…open your eyes. As far as TAXES are concerned, WE ALL need tax cuts and we need less government and less government spending. You idiots on the left fight for the crumbs while your leaders eat the pie….you couldn’t be MORE wrong about the economy.

MA

September 1st, 2010
12:18 pm

Good post “To All you Haters”.

As a retired medical professional I know for a fact that Representative Price (a surgeon) and Representative Linder (a dentist) WORKED (and obviously) did not spend their earnings foolishly – something apparently most of the posters that are complaining about “WEALTH” have more than likely NEVER done.

Wealth envy is a sign of laziness and irresponsibility. I suggest “wealth enviers” get off the computer; sell that big screen TV and those designer clothes; stop getting fatter and fatter going out to eat; forgo the unnecessary vacation; get a real JOB and save your own money and not those who WORKED for it!!!!

sidney c

September 1st, 2010
12:18 pm

Typical AJC trash… 7 of the top 10 are Democrats and all you are concerned with is 3 republicans who are well down the list. that is why no one takes your editorials seriously. Bias, total bias

JC

September 1st, 2010
12:19 pm

oxymoron of the day: Republican Christian
it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of the needle than it is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
still waiting on my trickle down check!

second

September 1st, 2010
12:20 pm

Why is it bias? The GOP thinks millionaires are better than everyone else, you should like this pointless story.

sid didn't get it

September 1st, 2010
12:25 pm

The reason the article mentions Republicans is because it’s focus is on politicians in GA. Read the article again Sidney.

findog

September 1st, 2010
12:25 pm

I’ve worked for self made millionaires and government insider trading millionaires. These gentlemen claim they made their money through hard work; I take them at their word that they have…

WealthEnvy

September 1st, 2010
12:29 pm

@JC at 12:19

There’s no reason a person cannot be both rich and a Christian. The point Christ was making is that people allow money, possessions, etc. to get in the way of their relationship with God. If you are so concerned with your bank account then you probably aren’t allowing God into your day-to-day life. It’s called a parable.

By the way, I’m guessing it is okay to be a Democrat Christian, right? I mean, what with all the pro-choice, forced “charity,” etc.

Tom

September 1st, 2010
12:31 pm

I dont begrudge any of these people but it was interesting to see just about all 50 had their net wealth increase……………and not by a little bit in most cases. Kind of a different trend than the rest of us experience.

danno

September 1st, 2010
12:36 pm

MA

You are some what right but do you think a doctor or dentist shuld be that rich?
Where did they get all that money. I am not smart but i did make a good income and I usually worked ony 60 hours per week making money and about 15 to 20 hours a week with kids and about 10 to 15 hours per week workng on my home. Just wanted to let you know your STUPID when doctors earn about $400.00 per hour which equates to about 3 patients per hour at about $133 per patient. That is just office calls not hospital time.Just remember there are people working 2 or 3 justs earning min. wage……..

majii

September 1st, 2010
12:40 pm

One may not like it, but facts have no bias, and they not a reflection of the writer’s opinion on the subject/topic.

FN Jerk

September 1st, 2010
12:41 pm

Isnt it ironic that (7) of the top 10 richest members of Congress are Demolishincrats and are also the same ones that bash the “rich”? Where does one draw the line between being a teapot and calling the kettle black?