When Scott Walker dropped out of the 2016 GOP presidential race today, the factors that led to his bowing out were similar to that of the previous dropout, Rick Perry: low ratings and a well-endowed Super PAC that nonetheless was useless in the face of the candidates’ own financially faltering campaigns.
While the imbalance between Super PAC and campaign coffers has been one thread in this campaign, there is another story of gross imbalance–that of the wealth of presidential candidates compared to the wealth of Americans at large.
According to a report by Politico, which analyzed candidates’ net worth using the data from the FEC disclosures, 14 of the candidates have an average net worth larger than one million, and 10 candidates have a net worth greater than 7.76 million. What’s the significance of that figure? It’s the dividing line between almost everyone in the country and the rarefied perch of the one percent.
With few exceptions, this is who runs for president in 2016: people with means, means most Americans, with a median net worth of $115,000, don’t even come close to.