Saturday, April 05, 2008

Sensenbrenner, our Daddy Warbucks,

personally makes millions from war

Its no secret that Rep. F. Jim Sensebrenner is worth big bucks -- somewhere between $21-million and $31-million, according to Open Secrets.Org, a project of the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP).

Where does all of that money come from?

A good chunk of it goes to Sensenbrenner in his role of Daddy Warbucks,as a major investor in military contractors doing business with the Pentagon.

Sensenbrenner has between $5.2-million and $7.6-million invested in "defense" contractors, who are reaping billions of dollars in profits from the war and occupation of Iraq -- a war, needless to say, that he supports every time he gets a chance to vote.

Those investments earned him at least $3.2-million between 2004 and 2006, CRP reports.

Sensenbrenner is not alone among members of Congress in raking in the spoils of war:
According to the most recent reports of their personal finances, 151 current members of Congress had between $78.7 million and $195.5 million invested in companies that received defense contracts of at least $5 million in 2006.
Its a bipartisan list, topped by Sen. John Kerry, who has somewhere between $28-million and $38-million invested in military contractors.
Back to our man Sensenbrenner, who earned more than Kerry from his investments:
A spokesman for Sensenbrenner, who has supported the administration's policy in Iraq, said the congressman's stocks were left to him by his grandparents and are managed almost entirely by his investment advisors. There has been no conscious effort on Sensenbrenner's part to invest in companies that have received defense contracts, his representative said.
Nor, it should be noted, has there been any effort to divest himself of those holdings.

A Los Angeles Times blog has this observation:
There's the irony that should keep the talk radio folks buzzing -- Kerry the Vietnam War veteran-turned-antiwar activist increasing the family money pot through investments in companies that help wage war.
You can probably count out talk radio in Milwaukee. As much as they'd like to go after Kerry, it would be difficult to do without talking about Sensenbrenner, their fair-haired conservative boy. But don't put anything past them. It wouldn't be the first time they had only bothered to tell half of the story.