It's not easy to win a presidential election, or even to compete in one, if you don't have a lot of money backing you up. Theoretically, this money could come from lots of small donations from citizens, allowing anyone to run for president regardless of much money they have (or don't have) in their bank account, but in reality, a nice bankroll is one of the most important requirements to get a campaign off the ground. So – here we have ten presidential currently running for the office of president, ranked by the size of their bankrolls. The number one spot shouldn't come as a surprise, but let's see what we get in between:
Jim Gilmore – $7 Million
Even in the crowded field of Republican presidential candidates, Jim Gilmore is keeping a pretty low profile. But he's in the race, and with a $7 million net worth accumulated in the business world concurrently with a long political career, he's #10 on the list of the top ten richest candidates.
Mike Huckabee – $9 Million
Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, has done extremely well for himself since gaining fame as a hardcore evangelical presidential candidate in 2008, vying for the Republican nomination against John McCain. He's at it again for the 2016 election, with a net worth of $9 million that makes him the ninth richest person in the race.
John Kasich – $10 Million
John Kasich takes home a relatively modest governor's salary from the State of Ohio, but his association with a much more controversial entity – Lehman Brothers – is responsible for the bulk of his fortune, for which he served as a managing director before its collapse in 2008. It's also important to point out that many experts suggest the activities of Lehman Brothers prior to its collapse contributed significantly to the subsequent and nearly fatal crash of the U.S. economy.
George Pataki – $13 Million
Serving as New York's governor isn't a low-paying job, but it won't give you a $13 million fortune either. To do that, former NY governor George Pataki has the Pataki-Cahill Group, a business firm he founded, and the law firm Chadbourde & Park, which he has about a million dollars annually for his legal services, to thank.
Jeb Bush – $20 Million
It's no secret that being part of the Bush family is an extremely lucrative endeavor, and Jeb Bush is no exception to that rule. His various business endeavors and speaking gigs he's been awarded since his days as governor of Florida have earned him a net worth of $20 million – especially impressive when you consider that his net worth was reportedly barely more than a million dollars on the day of his last term as governor.
Ben Carson – $30 Million
Not every presidential candidate has a last name they could bank on, though, and Dr. Ben Carson famously worked his way up from an impoverished upbringing to his current net worth in the $30 million neighborhood, a fortune he earned as a surgeon and a successful author, as well as through some savvy financial investments.
Hillary Clinton – $45 Million
Hillary Clinton and her husband Bill (perhaps you've heard of him) were not in good financial shape when they left the White House in 2001. But she's done admirably well for herself since then in the personal finance department, having accumulated a healthy $45 million net worth, almost as if she was saving up for a couple of expensive presidential campaigns.
Lincoln Chafee – $50 Million
Lest you think all of the richest presidential candidates this election cycle are either Republicans or Clintons, in steps Lincoln Chafee, who's been a Democrat for, uh, two years or so. He has a Republican-worthy $50 million fortune to fall back on if his presidential dreams don't pan out next year.
Carly Fiorina – $60 Million
Donald Trump is the most famous non-politician businessman running for president this election cycle, but he's not the only one. There's also Carly Fiorina, with a $60 million net worth that isn't much by Trump standards, but quite a bit compared to most of her competition in this presidential race.
Donald Trump – $4.5 Billion
And now we come to the richest presidential candidate, and it's no surprise – Donald Trump with his sometimes-contentious net worth of $4.5 billion. He says he's worth more, but even at this figure, he blows everyone else out of the water, and as if to rub it in more, he recently stated he's only spent a paltry half million on his campaign so far, thanks in part to an extremely cooperative news media who always finds the time to cover him for free.