While scads of federal lawmakers are calling it quits next year, many will be comforted in knowing their public service has made them millionaires.
The National Taxpayers Union Foundation, Washington, tracked 30 of the 47 retiring lawmakers' financial records.
According to the foundation, 12 of 13 Senate members they tracked who plan to retire next year will get an average $1.9 million in estimated lifetime benefits, while 18 of the 34 House members tracked will get an average of $2.2 million.
The big winners are: Rep. Robert S. Walker, R-Pa., $4.19 million; Rep. Pat Schroeder, D-Colo., $4.18 million; Rep. Gerry Studds, D-Mass., $3.5 million; Sen. William Cohen, R-Maine, $3.4 million; Sen. Sam Nunn, D-Ga., $2.8 million.
Some will get huge initial payments, including $106,880 for Rep. G.V. "Sonny" Montgomery, D-Miss., and $96,462 each for Sens. Mark Hatfield, R-Ore., and Claiborne Pell, D-R.I.
The foundation based its estimates on public records of length of federal service, retirement age, life expectancy using standard mortality tables and a 4% cost of living adjustment each year.