How Five of the Richest U.S. Congressman Grew Their Fortunes

As of 2012, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, the median net worth for a U.S. Senator was $2.8 million -- which is a whopping three times as much as the median number for members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The five Congressman that'll be discussed today, however, have an average net worth of nearly $150 million.

Many of today's wealthiest politicians have married into or inherited their wealth. But that's far from the case for this fab five. 

While each Congressman would almost surely admit that luck and good fortune was on their side, it would be naive to believe these individuals are anything other than extremely hardworking and incredibly savvy businessmen.

With the help of the Center for Responsive Politics, I have compiled some of the most compelling entrepreneurial stories our Congress has to offer. The short glimpses into the past of these five ultra-rich politicians can be found in the slideshow below.

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Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On February 08, 2014, at 1:20 PM, peckbill wrote:

    You forgot the sixth way they did it; they stole from the people they are sworn to serve.

  • Report this Comment On February 08, 2014, at 3:12 PM, Nobodiesfool wrote:

    Darrell Issa representative for California's 49th district is one of the richest Congressmen and perhaps the most crooked. Google his name and be amazed at what this guy has accomplished illegally!

  • Report this Comment On February 08, 2014, at 3:32 PM, Freddyfreebe1 wrote:

    It is call inside trading to everyone , unless you are in congress.

  • Report this Comment On February 08, 2014, at 4:23 PM, tomkat1111 wrote:

    " How Five of the Richest U.S. Congressman Grew Their Fortunes " ?

    I would guess by receiving money under the table from lobbyist.

  • Report this Comment On February 09, 2014, at 8:21 AM, antiDemocrat wrote:

    Obviously bribes and gifts were not mentioned especially for Reid and Pelosi and democrat presidents!

  • Report this Comment On February 09, 2014, at 8:39 AM, thomas4211 wrote:

    Congressmen are not goverened by the inside trading laws that the average citizens they rerpresent are !!! Then you have lobbiest with very deep pockets who gladly contribute to their wealth,under the table of course ! Dont forget that quite a few of them marry wealthy women,for example : John Carrie alias MR. John Heinz and John McCain come to mind !!!

  • Report this Comment On February 09, 2014, at 2:49 PM, mattsmithsd wrote:

    Darrell Issa created Viper car alarm systems, that's how he has a net worth in the 200mil range.

  • Report this Comment On February 09, 2014, at 9:58 PM, kymm wrote:

    All of Congress is just in office for one thing and one thing only, that's money. They show no concerns about the American people. If they really cared this country would not be in the mess we are in right now.

  • Report this Comment On February 10, 2014, at 9:43 AM, Grandpastu wrote:

    The rich Congressmen earned their money the old fashioned way, through scheming, money laundering and corruption. If I did it, I'd be in jail, but Congressmen are exempt from the law (and this is written into the Constitution; look it up). No member of Congress can be sued while in the performance of his duties.

  • Report this Comment On February 10, 2014, at 12:59 PM, Courtier123 wrote:

    U.S. Congress - Best Politicians Money can Buy.

  • Report this Comment On February 10, 2014, at 1:00 PM, Courtier123 wrote:

    Two Party System is a Failed System:

    You only need 51% to Control the 100%. Their Hate for Each Other is Lot More than their Love for the Country.

    - On top of it Special Interests and Lobby Groups continue to divide the Congress to achieve their Special Interests. Both Parties has been paid thousands of dollars by lobby groups to Serve and fulfill their pledges to them and betray the Country for personal gains.

    How to Fix it:

    - Term limits on Congress.

    - Independent President.

    - Ban Lobby Groups and Corporate Money from Washington.

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Dave Koppenheffer

Dave Koppenheffer, is a contributor for the Motley Fool's financial sector. And much like Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, when he speaks, he speaks with an earnest vibe and an earnest energy.

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