In an effort to be transparent and to prevent the possibility of conflicts of interest from occurring within the government, the Ethics in Government Act requires many elected officials to, each year, file a financial disclosure statement that reveals their various assets, investments, and businesses interests.

Senators are one of the groups of people who must make this disclosure. These disclosure statements are made available to the public and can give a good idea of the financial position of their filers.

Key Takeaways

  • There are many millionaires in the U.S. Senate, whose fortunes primarily come from their careers in business before they entered politics.
  • The wealthiest senator is Mitt Romney (R) of Utah, followed closely by Sen. Mark Warner (D) of Virginia.
  • The salary for a U.S. senator as of 2021 is $174,000 per annum.

Understanding Congressional Wealth

All senators have a specified salary paid by the government, which as of 2021, is $174,000 per annum. However, many senators make much more than that annually and have a high net worth. This is usually the case because many senators started their careers in business and made the bulk of their fortunes before joining the political world.

On top of that, senators are high-profile people with a lot of power, and through that, they have access to various business opportunities and other important people, which allows them to make investments to further increase their wealth.

1. Sen. Mitt Romney (R)

Sen. Romney needs no introduction, having run for president. As a senator for Utah, he is the wealthiest senator, with a net worth of $250 million. Like most wealthy senators, Romney made his fortune in business before he got started in politics. He founded and ran the private investment firm, Bain Capital.

2. Sen. Mark Warner (D)

Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia is one of the wealthiest members of the U.S. Senate and Congress, which consists of all the members of the House of Representatives and of the Senate. As of the latest information, from 2018, his net worth is approximately $215 million.

Born in 1954, he grew up in a typical American middle-class household. From as early as college, Sen. Warner had political aspirations. At one point during his time as a political science student, he even suggested to his parents that he would one day become president.

The vast majority of Warner’s wealth came from Columbia Capital, a venture capital firm he founded shortly after graduating from law school. Under his direction, the firm made several successful early investments in companies that operated in the telecommunication industry, including XM Satellite Radio and Nextel Communications, which was acquired by Sprint in 2005 for $36 billion.

3. Sen. Rick Scott (R)

Sen. Rick Scott of Florida has an estimated net worth of $220 million. He is a new senator, starting his career in 2019. Before that, he was the governor of Florida. He started his career in business, which is where he made the bulk of his wealth. He created one of the largest hospital networks, the Columbia Hospital Corporation.

4. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D)

California’s Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s estimated net worth is $88 million as of 2018. Blum Capital, a private equity firm founded in 1975 by her husband, Richard Blum, is the source for most of that wealth. 

5. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D)

Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal and his wife’s personal fortune is approximately $82 million. His spouse, Cynthia Malkin, is a real estate investor, as well as an heiress to the Malkin property empire, which is where the bulk of his wealth comes from.

6. Sen. James E. Risch (R)

Sen. James Risch of Idaho is another wealthy member of the U.S. Senate, with an estimated net worth of $42 million, much of which is invested in more than 260 acres of farm and ranch land in Idaho.

From 1789-1815, U.S. senators were paid $6 per diem.

7. Sen. John Hoeven (R)

Sen. John Hoeven has served as the senior U.S. senator from North Dakota since 2011. Before that, he was the state’s governor for 10 years. His net worth as of 2018 is approximately $47 million. Sen. Hoeven worked as a bank executive before he started his political career, as the former CEO of First Western Bank and the Bank of North Dakota. Sen. Hoeven remains an owner of First Western Bank and sits on its board of directors.

8. Sen. Ron Johnson (R)

Sen. Johnson has an estimated net worth of $39 million. Like many of the richest people in Congress, Sen. Johnson made his fortune in the world of business before he became a politician.

In the late '70s, the senator began employment as an accountant at PACUR, a Wisconsin-based polyester and plastics manufacturing company owned by his brother-in-law. As time passed, he moved up through the ranks, and eventually became the company's CEO by the mid-'80s.

9. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R)

Sen. McConnell from Kentucky has an estimated net worth of $34 million as of 2018. Sen. McConnell has been a senator for a long time, starting in 1984. The bulk of his wealth comes from a gift his father bestowed on him in 2008. The bulk of his investments are in a Vanguard 500 Index fund.

Many citizens and analysts believe that Congress is out of touch with the needs of the average American citizen because of the sizable wealth of many of its members.

10. Sen. Rob Portman (R)

Sen. Portman from Ohio has a net worth of $10.8 million. His family founded and grew a material-handling distributor company and a large portion of his wealth is in Lebanon House Inc., which owns the Golden Lamb Inn, in Ohio.

Senators Net Worth FAQs

Who Is the Richest U.S. Senator?

The richest U.S. senator is Mitt Romney of Utah, with an estimated net worth of $250 million.

What Is a U.S. Senator’s Salary?

The salary of a U.S. senator is $174,000 per annum.

Do U.S. Senators Make a Lot of Money?

The salary of a U.S. senator is $174,000 per annum, but senators usually make more money through other investments, the use of their high-profile status to make connections and various business dealings that help increase their wealth.

How Much Is Senator Mark Warner Worth?

Senator Mark Warren's net worth is approximately $215 million.

What Is Senator Mitch McConnell’s Net Worth?

Senator Mitch McConnell's net worth is approximately $34 million.