The field of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates is heating up and so is increased scrutiny of the candidates’ income.
According to tax returns released earlier this year, Sen. Kamala Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff, reported about $1.9 million in adjusted gross income for last year. Out of the candidates in the Democratic primary who have released their income taxes so far, Harris and her husband’s income is more than double the next-highest earning candidate in the 2020 primary field. Harris’ financial success appears to have grown along with her time on the national stage. However, some have noted that she is a high-income candidate who is campaigning on helping the low-income Americans that the economic system, which the candidates have profited from, has abused.
Starting in 2004, Harris was a district attorney for San Francisco and then in 2011 was a district attorney for the state of California, making an income between $125,000 and $225,000.
However, her household income grew when she married Emhoff in 2014. The lawyer was then a partner at the law firm Venable. In 2014, they filed their taxes jointly, reporting about $1.2 million in adjusted gross income that year.
Since her 2016 Senate election win, the senator’s income has increased, making $157,000 from her job in Congress last year. Meanwhile, she reported $320,000 in net income from her memoir, “The Truths We Hold,” which came out in January 2019.
Meanwhile, Emhoff became a partner at law firm DLA Piper in Los Angeles, taking in about $1.5 million last year.
CNBC also reports that on a separate 2018 Senate financial disclosure form, Harris said the couple had between $2.5 million and $5.8 million in assets, mostly held in mutual funds, along with bank accounts and retirement plans. Harris also put down between $2.8 million and $3.6 million in liabilities for the couple in the form of mortgages, home equity lines of credit and a commercial loan.
At the first 2020 Democratic primary debate last week, Harris promised to repeal the 2017 Republican tax bill, saying it “benefits the top 1%” of earners” and “the biggest corporations in America.”
Harris also said, “Working families need support and need to be lifted up. And frankly, this economy is not working for working people.”
Harris campaign spokesman Ian Sams said in a statement that the senator’s agenda shows she is “committed to lifting up average Americans.” He also pointed out her plans to give a tax credit of up to $500 a month to working families, raise teacher pay by an average of $13,500, transition to a universal health-care system and close the gender pay gap.
Sams said, “She is motivated by the thought of people up at 3:00 in the morning trying to make it all work. Her agenda is meant to address their needs and improve their lives.”
Harris is not the only democratic candidate who has made big bucks.
Former Vice President Joe Biden has yet to release his tax returns but has promised to do so. Biden is believed to have made millions since leaving the White House in 2017. He also released a book, “Promise Me, Dad,” in 2017 and has a national tour. He has also reportedly given paid speeches since leaving office.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and husband Bruce Mann reported nearly $850,000 in adjusted gross income for 2018.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and his wife Jane had about $560,000 in adjusted gross income last year. They took in more than $1 million in 2016 and 2017 each.