Clinton, Romney Are Wealthiest Candidates

US Senator of New York Hillary Rodham Clinton, left and former Massachusetts Governor, during Republican presidential candidate debate Mitt Romney.
AP / CBS
Former President Clinton made more than $10 million in paid speeches last year, according to new filings that show he and his presidential-candidate wife have at least $10 million in the bank, and may have closer to $50 million.

According to financial disclosure forms made public Thursday, Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton hold two accounts, each valued at somewhere between $5 and $25 million. One is an old-fashioned bank account; the other is a blind trust.

The reports indicate that when it comes to family wealth, Clinton is the wealthiest of the members of Congress running for president. Of all the presidential candidates, only Mitt Romney, whose assets are between $190 million and $250 million, may lay claim to being more affluent.

Republican Sen. John McCain's family wealth is almost exclusively held by his wife, Cindy. An heiress to a major beer distribution company, Cindy McCain has several trust funds, money markets and other accounts, some more than $1 million.

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and his wife, Michelle, reported assets ranging from $460,000 to $1.1 million. Those assets don't include options in Tree House Foods, a food distribution firm on whose board Michelle Obama served. Michelle Obama stepped down from the board recently.

Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., listed as one of his major assets a cottage in County Galway, Ireland, worth between $100,001 and $250,000. He reported earning rent from the cottage of between $5,001 and $15,000. His wife, Jackie, has money market funds, IRAs and stock in companies, including Blockbuster Inc.

Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., listed bank accounts and life insurance policies worth between $19,000 and $110,000. He receives a teaching stipend from Widener University where he has been an adjunct law professor since 1991. His wife teaches at the Delaware Technical and Community College.

Most of the presidential candidates serving in the Senate reported income from books. Obama was the most successful, reporting $572,490 in royalties for one book and an advance for a second. Hillary Clinton's own book profits are declining, years after her "Living History" became a best-seller in 2003. She reported royalties of $350,000 for the book last year. Dodd received a $30,000 advance for "Letter from Nuremberg." His father was a prosecutor at the Nuremberg trials of Nazi war criminals.

Most of the presidential candidates filed financial disclosures last month to the Federal Election Commission and the Office of Government Ethics. Among the leading candidates, however, Clinton, McCain and Romney received extensions because the Office of Government Ethics wants them to open up their blind trusts.

The reports filed with the Senate by Clinton and McCain list the blind trusts, but don't disclose what is in them.

Former President Clinton upped his speechmaking money from the previous year, garnering some $10.2 million in payments, compared with about $7.5 million the year before.

The Clintons had a much more pedestrian income when he ran for president in 1992. If Sen. Clinton's 2008 presidential bid is successful, they will enter the White House a very rich couple.

Six years out of power, Bill Clinton can still raise huge sums with a personal appearance. He made a staggering $450,000 for a single September speech in London, at a Fortune Forum event, as well as $200,000 for an April appearance in the Bahamas to speak to IBM, and another $200,000 for a New York speech to General Motors.

The former president's earnings must be reported as the spouse of a senator. Disclosure rules do not require him to reveal everything. He received an advance from Random House for an unpublished manuscript, but is only required to say that it was greater than $1,000.

He also did not have to say how much he earns as a partner with Yucaipa Global Opportunities Fund, a Los Angeles-based investment firm.