NYT: Democrat Ed Pastor Makes the Elite Capitol Hill Millionaire’s Club

Over the last 20 years I’ve worked or volunteered on several campaigns (Don Shooter, Jim Buster, Jonathan Barnert and Janet Contreras) to unseat Democrat Ed Pastor. One of the message that has been used is that Ed Pastor does not represent the values of the people who reside in his district. Although he was born in a small mining town, he’s adopted the left’s position on policy and class warfare. In essence, he’s become an elitist.

Now comes confirmation that what we’ve been preaching as populist pronouncements all these years is actually true.

Today’s article in The New York Times backs that assertion up.

According to writer Eric Lichtblau:

Today, Mr. Pastor, a miner’s son and a former high school teacher, is a member of a not-so-exclusive club: Capitol Hill millionaires. That group has grown in recent years to include nearly half of all members of Congress — 250 in all — and the wealth gap between lawmakers and their constituents appears to be growing quickly, even as Congress debates unemployment benefits, possible cuts in food stamps and a “millionaire’s tax.” 

Mr. Pastor buys a Powerball lottery ticket every weekend and says he does not consider himself rich. Indeed, within the halls of Congress, where the median net worth is $913,000 and climbing, he is not. He is a rank-and-file millionaire. But compared with the country at large, where the median net worth is $100,000 and has dropped significantly since 2004, he and most of his fellow lawmakers are true aristocrats.

Largely insulated from the country’s economic downturn since 2008, members of Congress — many of them among the “1 percenters” denounced by Occupy Wall Street protesters — have gotten much richer even as most of the country has become much poorer in the last six years, according to an analysis by The New York Times based on data from the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonprofit research group.

We decided to pull Pastor’s personal financial disclosure reports from Legistorm, a DC-based non-partisan data resource entity, to see exactly what the congressman from Arizona’s 4th congressional district claimed on his 2011 disclosures. This included earned income, assets and unearned income, liabilities and travel payments and reimbursements. You can view them as well: [2011 Disclosure] [2011_Disclosure Amended].

We also took a look at information revealed by Open Secrets which shows the political side of Ed Pastor’s congressional lifestyle. It’s not hard to see that Ed Pastor has taken a lot of money from unions and trial lawyers.

How will the so-called 99% react to this new revelation? You won’t see them protesting outside his office or shouting him down at his next public appearance (if he ever has one). No, all you’ll hear from the Occupy folks is the sound of silent sanction as Mr. Pastor readies for his next campaign for congress.


Comments

  1. Speaking as a constituent, I think he represents the district fine. Other than having money (which by the way, is NOT an progressive concern – there are a lot of fine multi-millionaires/billionaires who we’re OK with – Bill Gates [for his philanthropy, anyway], Warren Buffett, Steve Wozniak, etc. etc.), how does he not represent the district?

    The problem isn’t money, Shane. The problem is not paying a fair share, and preventing others from having the opportunity to succeed (not a guarantee of success – an OPPORTUNITY to succeed). No one ever said earning money is bad – exploitation is the problem.

    As for Janet Contreras, you only need to look at this column, published in 2011 right here at the big SA to see how out of touch she is with the people who live in the district:

    http://sonoranalliance.com/2011/06/22/do-liberals-and-conservatives-really-hate-each-other/

    Apprently, she forgot she was running for city council, not Sith Apprentice.

    CD-4, at least right now, voted for Ed Pastor, Greg Stanton, and (at least in my neighborhood) Tom Simplot. Hate to tell you, but Ed’s in line with the values of the district – it’s the conservative movement that’s not. That’s why you keep losing there.

  2. Nordine Crub says

    Any other Az congressmen in the club? I’m going to assume congressman Franks and Denstpr McCain but there may be more.

  3. “Wealth-takers, not wealth-makers.”
    — a senior United Nations official

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