President Joe Biden has served the nation for many years, first as a senator and later as vice president before winning in 2020. Joe Biden has consistently worked within the Democratic Party and has a heavy support from various people around the nation, including many working-class people. For many years, he was known as Middle Class Joe and was consistently one of the “poorest” members of congress.
Understanding Joe Biden net worth estimates can help both his supporters and his opponents better understand his lengthy and sprawling political career. It can highlight a variety of different facts about how he has earned his money, including his time in congress, work as a collegiate professor, and many other activities that have made him a self-made millionaire and the most powerful man on Earth.
Joe Biden Net Worth
While Joe Biden consistently stated that he was the “poorest member” of congress, he has never been a poor person. Before he became vice president, he had a net worth of about $500,000, which is still higher than many working-class people. Financial disclosures back to 1998 show that he and his wife made about $215,000 a year as a couple. Compared to many congress members, that is a low income.
However, Joe Biden net worth estimates are at about $8 million since he became the vice president. As a president, he earns a base salary of $400,000 and has a $50,000 expense account and a $100,000 nontaxable travel income with a $19,000 entertainment stipend for each year he's president. His income as vice president was about $390,000 per year and his net worth was about $1.5 million after leaving office.
After leaving the White House, he earned income from speeches, book royalties, and much more. In 2017, he earned $11 million and earned between $17 million between 2016 and 2019 in total. This income also includes that of his wife, Jill. Though his net worth is about $8 million even after these earnings, he likely spent much of that income on upgrading his home and lifestyle.
This heavy increase in income comes later in life, as the Bidens had lived a comfortable but modest life before he was chosen to be vice president by President Barack Obama. During his pre- and post-Obama career, Joe Biden net worth has come from a multitude of sources, even beyond his time as a senator and in other political offices.
Where He Earned His Income
Before Joe Biden became the vice president, he served as a senator from 1973 to 2009 and was Delaware's longest-tenured senator of all time. During his time as a senator, his income went from $42,500 per year to about $174,000 per year. This money helped support his family through challenging periods, including his first wife and daughter being killed in a car accident weeks after he won the election.
While his work as a senator earned him a consistent income, Biden also worked as a professor at Widener University School of Law as an adjunct professor. He taught her from 1991 to 2008 and would often come back from overseas trips to teach. Though he and his wife Jill had a consistent income, they were not rich people and Biden had an alleged $30,000 net worth in 2009.
It is clear that Biden, like many politicians, was able to transform his life after winning a major office. The source of this income has been repeatedly reported throughout the years and is included in Biden's tax reports to the IRS. Understanding how a modest middle-class man became a millionaire showcases the unique effects that political office can have on the right person.
How Biden Became a Millionaire
After leaving the White House in 2016, Joe Biden became a very well-known and respected public figure. Though he refused to run for president in 2016 against future President Donald Trump, he eventually earned a sizable income with a multi-book deal from Flatiron Books. This deal was worth at least $8 million and makes up the vast majority of Joe Biden's net worth now.
That said, Biden also earns good money for speaking engagements. Each engagement earns him anywhere from $40,000 to $190,000, depending on the size of the engagement and their financial options. Many of these engagements are also unpaid, including at various campaign stops and even at university events. These events helped further increase his net worth in many ways.
Furthermore, Joe Biden also earned $540,000 as a professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement. This center focuses on a democratic and tolerant culture and looks to improve the world through various educational options. It is designed to help engage foreign policy leaders and identify unique opportunities for political engagement.
Beyond his political career and these speaking engagements, Biden has also earned money in other ways. For instance, he is known as a real estate investor in several different facilities. These investments have helped to increase his net worth but also took up much of his initial income. They are not cheap properties and require maintenance and upgrades to retain their value.
Joe Biden's Real Estate
Joe Biden has real estate investments in several different areas, including two homes in Delaware that are worth about $4 million total. These make up at least 50% of their net worth, which isn't uncommon for many rich people. It also shows where much of his book deal money likely went. Many people often invest in real estate after making good money because it typically retains its value and provides a great source of retirement capital for older adults.
When he finally settled his book deal, Biden invested much of that money into these homes and also had a few other cash investments in multiple other purchases. This has helped him stabilize his net worth and likely keep it strong as he ages and looks to provide for his grandchildren, including those of his often maligned son, Hunter Biden. Hunter's problems have sometimes even affected his father's political career.
Struggles With Hunter Biden
Over the years, Joe Biden has shown consistent support for his son, Hunter, especially after he survived the car crash that claimed the life of his mother when he was just two years old. However, Hunter has consistently been the center of various controversies, often led by Joe Biden's Republican political opponents. That said, Hunter has also been criticized by many within the Democratic Party.
Hunter Biden has been in and out of rehab multiple times for alcohol and cocaine. He started drinking as a high schooler and did cocaine while in college. In one unfortunate instance, Hunter signed up for the US Navy Reserves but tested positive for cocaine use on his first day and was discharged. For months after the death of his older brother in 2015, Hunter binged on alcohol and rarely left the house.
These abuse problems affected Hunter's life and cost him his wife, who eventually left him. Hunter was also part of the Paradigm Global Advisors group, which was eventually connected to one of the largest Ponzi Schemes in US history. The Bidens faced no charges and eventually liquidated the fund to return money to the investors who lost money due to the connection to the Ponzi Scheme.
Other Problems With Hunter
Hunter also had troubles with sex addiction and had cheated on his wife for years, including fathering a child of an exotic dancer. Unfortunately, Biden has also been accused of tax fraud and other crimes, though his father continues to support him. While it's unknown if Hunter Biden has impacted his father's net worth, these struggles have hounded his political career for years.
These included claims that some of Hunter's business interests with Chinese investors were a conflict of interest while his father was vice president. While no evidence of wrongdoing has ever been found, these claims continue to follow Joe Biden among his Republican critics, who use Hunter as evidence that Joe Biden himself is corrupt.
Though no criminal charges have been yet brought against Hunter Biden, his critics and those of his father believe it is just a matter of time. Whether or not this means his father has been guilty of corruption is unknown. No matter what happens, Joe Biden's net worth is likely to decrease as he attempts to defend his son in court.
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Written by Allen Lee
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