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For Sequester, Kerry, Worth $198.65 Million, to Give $9,175 to Charity

2:49 PM, Apr 4, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
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John Kerry, who is worth an estimated $198.65 million, will donate $9,175 because of the so-called sequestration. 

"A day after Obama and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said they'd return 5 percent of their paycheck to the Treasury, Secretary of State John Kerry followed in somewhat similar fashion," the Huffington Post reports.

"State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland says Kerry, however, will give his 5 percent to a charity for department employees. She says he already makes significant charitable donations. Kerry makes $183,500 this year. His donation is worth $9,175."

Based on Senate disclosure forms, Roll Call estimated Kerry to be worth $198.65 million in 2011. Roll Call reported:

Kerry has been a mainstay on Roll Call's list of the wealthiest in Congress for more than 15 years, due in large part to the assets of his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, the widow of the late Sen. H. John Heinz III (R-Pa.) of the Heinz ketchup fortune.

Though Kerry's reported minimum net worth of $198.65 million is more than $100 million short of what he'd need to nab the top spot, the actual value of his fortune is likely far more than what is reported each year.

The Senate's financial disclosure form has separate categories for assets held jointly by a couple and those held only by a lawmaker's spouse. While a sizable joint asset has to be reported within a standard range - $5 million to $25 million or $25 million to $50 million, for example - that of a spouse is only recorded as having a minimum value in excess of $1 million.

Given that the Senator listed more than 100 assets held by Teresa Heinz Kerry that exceeded $1 million, it is likely that the couple's fortune is far more.

Though Kerry reports dozens of liabilities, most are associated with various Heinz family trusts. Only two are personal, one of which is a line of credit of at least $50,000 secured by the Kerrys' personal residence in Providence, R.I.

It isn't clear what charity Kerry will donate the $9,175 he's setting aside for sequester.

Kerry was the richest senator before becoming the richest cabinet member.

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