Nancy Pelosi has come a long way. Originally from Baltimore, Md., Pelosi moved to San Francisco after meeting husband Paul at Trinity College in Washington, D.C. Pelosi initially didn’t have many political aspirations, as she and Paul had five children and she was primarily focused on raising them while occasionally volunteering for the Democratic party in the Bay Area.
However, Pelosi officially became an elected official in 1987, winning a special election for California’s 8th district. By 2002, she was chosen as the first female Democratic leader in the House of Representatives and, when Democrats took control of the House during the 2006 midterm election, Pelosi became the first female Speaker of the House. Although Democrats lost control of the house in 2010, they won it again in 2018, and Pelosi returned to the position.
As the Speaker of the House, Pelosi is second in line to the presidency, making her not just one of the most important and powerful people in the United States, but in the entire world. All of that power has come with a lot of cash, too, contributing to Speaker Pelosi’s shockingly high net worth.
Nancy Pelosi is worth more than you might think
As with finding the net worth of any public figure, the exact figures of Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s net worth are hard to exactly pinpoint. The Los Angeles Times reported in 2018 that Pelosi was worth at least $16 million, making her the fifth wealthiest member of Congress from California. That figure was actually a downgrade from previous years, following an $11 million decrease in assets. The Times also noted that Pelosi’s husband Paul had about $27 million in assets, making their household worth at least $43 million.
However, lawmakers only have to report their assets within a range of numbers, not the exact number, so other outlets have estimated Pelosi’s net worth to be far higher. Fox Business said that, given the wide range for these disclosures, it’s possible that Pelosi is worth up to $160 million, but estimated that her true net worth was more in the neighborhood of $114 million, and her absolute minimum net worth at $34 million. This estimate places Pelosi as the sixth wealthiest member of the House of Representatives, not just in California, but in the United States at large.
Despite the range of estimates, Pelosi is undeniably worth tens of millions of dollars. So where does the money come from?
Nancy Pelosi has assets all over the place
A not-insignificant part of Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s wealth comes from her salary. As Speaker of the House, Pelosi earns $223,500 per year; as the preeminent member of the House, Pelosi earns more than the rest of the members, who earn $174,000 per year. Before becoming an elected official in 1987, Pelosi did not receive any salary, as she spent her time raising children and volunteering for the Democratic party.
The rest of Pelosi’s earnings come from a variety of different holdings. Pelosi and her husband Paul own quite a bit of pricey real estate, including a home-slash-vineyard that is valued at a minimum of $5 million. According to the Los Angeles Times, as of 2018, Paul owned three other properties worth at least $5 million, and another commercial property worth at least $1 million.
Pelosi and her husband also have holdings in several major tech companies, as well. Per the Times, Pelosi has holdings in Visa, the Walt Disney Corporation, and Apple, each worth at least $1 million. Her financial disclosure report also showed transactions involving Facebook, Amazon, and AT&T, though only the Amazon transaction was more than $1 million.
Nancy Pelosi's wealth has earned her fans and critics
While Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s journey from stay-at-home mom to the most powerful woman in America has earned her plenty of fans, she isn’t without critics, either. As one of the richest elected officials in the nation, it’s true that Pelosi lives a very different life than that of her constituents, a fact that became the subject of controversy in 2020 during the coronavirus lockdown.
Appearing on The Late Late Show, Pelosi encouraged people to stay home and make the best of their situations, showing viewers that she had her fridge stocked with her favorite ice cream, writing on Twitter, “We have all found ways to keep our spirits up during these trying times.” Coming right after millions of Americans filed for unemployment, the optics were certainly not the best, and Pelosi was quickly criticized by leaders on both the right and the left.
Steve Guest, rapid response director of the Trump Campaign, noted (via RealClearPolitics) that Pelosi is “eating $13 dollar a pint ice cream out of her $24,000 fridge,” while The View co-host Meghan McCain claimed (via the Chicago Tribune) that Pelosi fell for a media trap, stating “Optics are narratives… I don’t make the rules of politics, this is just how it works.” McCain’s co-host Joy Behar, however, defended Pelosi, saying, “Let’s go to Trump Tower and see what kind of refrigerator he has.” Given that Pelosi just won reelection with nearly 80 percent of the vote, neither the incident nor her net worth seem to bother her constituents all that much.
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