WASHINGTON — Personal financial data for members of Congress went public on Thursday, and only six members of the Minnesota delegation got their disclosure forms in on time.
Sen. Al Franken and U.S. Reps. Collin Peterson, Michele Bachmann and Chip Cravaack requested extensions for their filings, as did 88 other members of Congress. Franken, Bachmann and Cravaack requested similar extensions last year. They now have until mid-August to file their disclosures.
As for the rest of the delegation, the financial disclosure forms reveal a bit about how lawmakers made their money last year, outside of their congressional salaries. Lawmakers are required to report their financial holdings and their debt, and under rules instituted by new congressional ethics laws pushed by Rep. Tim Walz, any home mortgages they might have. Members do not need to report the exact value of their assets or debt, and as you’ll see, the broad reporting ranges make it hard to nail down exactly how wealthy they really are.
You can sort through the Center for Responsive Politics’ database of congressional finances here to see how these numbers compare to what Minnesota’s lawmakers reported last year. Reports for House members can be found here, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s filing (the Senate has not posted its reports yet) is here.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D) has a net worth between $310,000 and $1 million, potentially making her the wealthiest member of the delegation whose disclosures were available Thursday (Franken, Bachmann and Cravaack reported potential million-dollar net worths last year). Klobuchar reported no debts and most of her assets are held in mutual funds and life insurance policies. She also has a $50,000 to $100,000 college fund set up for her daughter.
Update: Klobuchar’s office says “her actual money reported is somewhere in the middle of the range.”
Rep. Tim Walz (D) reported between $199,000 and $460,000 in assets, mostly in mutual funds, insurance properties and a rental property in Mankato. He holds a stake in a Nebraska family farm worth between $15,000 and $50,000.
Walz reported between $190,000 and $460,000 in debt, much of it for a mortgage and line of credit on the Mankato property.
Rep. John Kline (R) has assets worth between $248,000 and $645,000, held mainly in annuities and a farm in Houston, Minn. He has between $215,000 and $350,000 in debt, stemming from mortgages on homes in Lakeville, Minn. and Washington.
Rep. Erik Paulsen (R) holds more shares of stock in individual companies than any member of the delegation, and his assets total $152,000 to $704,000. He owns stock in companies such as Procter & Gamble, Xcel Energy and Medtronic, though none are valued at more than $15,000. He has between $15,000 and $20,000 in debts in the form of a mortgage on his home.
Rep. Keith Ellison (D) has the fewest assets of the delegation and likely its lowest net worth, holding mutual funds worth only between $2,000 and $34,000. He did buy a Minneapolis home in January 2011, and mortgages make up most of the $260,000 to $615,000 he holds in debt.
Rep. Betty McCollum (D) owns between $12,000 and $180,000 in assets, mostly mutual funds. She has between $200,000 and $500,000 in debt, all in the form of mortgages on her two homes, one in St. Paul and another in Washington.
Devin Henry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @dhenry