Sen. Warnock Has Doubled His Income Since He Started
Almost the course of 2021, Warnock made over $500,000 from various sources, including book sales, freelance work, and paid appearances.
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According to his financial disclosures, Senator Raphael Warnock’s income has more than doubled in the past year since he first entered the Senate. The bulk of his half-million dollar windfall comes from outside employers and book agreements.
Warnock reported a whopping $532,781 in income for 2021, up significantly from the $221,602 he made in the year prior to his election. He made less than $90,000 from his Senate pay of $164,816 last year. He received an additional $120,964 from Ebenezer Baptist Church, which included a housing allowance of $7,417 monthly. His memoir was out in June, and Penguin Random House gave him a $243,750 advance on it, plus he made $5,750 from speaking engagements.
Two years ago, Warnock accused his predecessor, former Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, of “using [the] people’s seat to benefit yourself.” Loeffler’s earnings have increased dramatically since Warnock took office. Given that many legislators manage to leverage their positions over time into multimillion-dollar fortunes, the money is likely to foster the idea that holding public office is a means to riches. Warnock’s two-year compensation raise of 100 percent exemplifies how rapidly such an improvement is possible.
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Some of Warnock’s unique financial arrangements have already attracted public attention. Warnock earned $120,000 from Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta last year, despite the fact that senators are not allowed to receive more than $29,000 in outside income, by classifying the majority of this sum as a “housing allowance.” In addition, in July, he was criticized for spending campaign funds to defend himself from personal lawsuits that had been filed against him before he ran for office.
Warnock’s Republican opponent in Georgia’s senate election, Herschel Walker, has attacked the Democrat’s outside activities, saying that Warnock “just cares about making a better life for himself, not the people of Georgia.
The people of Georgia are less important to Raphael Warnock than he is to himself. “He has been attempting to cash in on his employment from day one, a Walker official told the Washington Free Beacon. To quote one critic, Warnock is always looking for another opportunity to utilize his position to make more money and squander campaign cash. The Warnock campaign did not provide any statement in response to our inquiry.
Using a creative financial arrangement with the Ebenezer Baptist Church, Warnock was able to circumvent ethics regulations that forbid legislators from earning more than 15 percent of their income from outside businesses. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, his campaign claimed that $89,000 of his salary from Ebenezer Baptist Church went toward his “personal parsonage stipend” to cover the cost of his home. According to the AJC, Warnock’s Atlanta mansion is worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $1 million.
In addition, conservatives lodged an official complaint with the Federal Elections Commission in July, claiming that Warnock had broken the law by using campaign cash to pay for non-campaign-related legal bills. During his stint as pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Warnock was sued, and his campaign has paid for his legal representation.
According to the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s complaint, “the conduct that gave rise to the litigation occurred long before Warnock was a candidate for federal office, and the conduct had nothing to do with Warnock’s now-status as a candidate and officeholder.”
Oulèye Ndoye, Warnock’s ex-wife, filed a custody action against him in February, alleging that he left her “financially constrained” by forcing her to shoulder the cost of daycare even though his salary had increased significantly.
Given that the median housing income in Georgia is $61,000, Warnock’s meteoric rise in wealth is all the more impressive given that he has previously criticized his multimillionaire 2020 opponent Loeffler for being out of touch with voters there. During the campaign, he also claimed that Loeffler made millions of dollars after attending a secret COVID briefing and then selling his stocks.
At one point in the discussion, Warnock said, “I’m comfortable with the idea that she wants to earn money, I just think you shouldn’t exploit the people’s position to enrich yourself.” The people’s seat should be used for people’s representation. The election between Warnock and Walker is extremely close, and the outcome could determine which party has the majority in the United States Senate next year.