16 Richest Presidential Candidates
Not only is the office of the President of the United States the highest position that can be held in this country, it is often considered to be the most prominent position in all of the world. Indeed, the President of the United States is frequently referred to as the “Leader of the Free World.” With that kind of power, it’s no surprise that the position is targeted by prominent people from a variety of backgrounds.
While there will always be a long list of Senators and Governors that pursue the Presidency, there are also people from other walks of life that take a shot at winning the job. Often, those people who chase down Presidential votes have one specific thing in common – they’re rich.
Throughout the history of the United States, there have been many rich candidates vying for their spot in the Oval Office. Usually, they’re private business owners rather than Senators or Governors, but occasionally someone who is already in public office will be wealthy from previous endeavors. The obvious advantage to running for President as a rich individual is you can buy support from a number of different directions. Money talks, and it perhaps speaks the loudest in the world of politics.
It should probably be seen as good news that rich candidates for the job of President are rarely successful. Buying your way into the election race is a good way to make headlines and draw some attention to yourself, but it has not often been a successful endeavor. Most of the time, the wealthy candidates who have forced themselves into the spotlight will fade away after a brief period of attention-grabbing speeches. For all of the flaws present in the U.S. political system, the person who ends up winning the race of President is typically well-qualified for the task – regardless of which political party you happen to support.
The list below contains 16 of the richest people who have chosen to run for President at some point throughout U.S. history.
Hillary Clinton is once again running for President in 2016, having first explored the idea back in 2008. Obviously, the Democratic nomination – and the Presidency – was won by Barack Obama in that year, and again in 2012. Hillary, along with her husband, former President Bill Clinton, are worth many, many millions thanks in large part to public speaking fees. By some estimates, the Clintons may bring in as much as $25 to $30 million a year, meaning they make as much as some baseball players! Despite their large (and growing) bank accounts, the Clintons remain prominent figures in the liberal Democratic party, and Hillary has a strong chance of winning the nomination in 2016.
As controversial as they come, Donald Trump has made huge headlines in the race for the 2016 Presidential election. Hoping to win the Republican nomination, Trump naturally has a huge bank account behind him. While his exact wealth is somewhat up for debate, there is no doubt that The Donald is worth billions.
One of the richest men ever to seek the office, Trump will likely face an uphill battle later in the election as some of his more outrageous claims come under more and more scrutiny. Trump has made his fortune in real estate, but he has also filed bankruptcy several times for a variety of properties. If half of the challenge when running for public office is simply getting the public to know your name, Trump already has that mission accomplished. Thanks to his larger than life personality and reality show, Donald Trump is a stranger to virtually no one in the U.S.
When you run a magazine that is best known for tracking the wealth of prominent business figures and celebrities, you can bet that you’re doing fairly well yourself. Such is the case for Steve Forbes, who ranks among the richest men to ever run for President.
He attempted to gain the Republican nomination twice, falling short in both 1996 and 2000. Of note is his 2000 Presidential campaign, in which it was reported that he spent some $37 million of his own money to finance the run. Although Forbes has plenty of cash to spend, dropping $37 million on a campaign has to hurt – especially when he could have gotten just as close to the White House by taking a tour of Washington D.C. while on vacation.