One Trend Among GOP Freshmen: Debt
Not the national kind, the personal kind
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 16, 2011 8:46 AM CDT
Ellen Austin, left, and Adam Hall, center, of Washington, walk with their 8-month-old puppy Maya in front of the US Capitol building on Saturday, Dec. 19, 2009 in Washington.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – Republican freshmen in Congress say they're serious about tackling the US debt—but when it comes to their own personal debt, many have what the Washington Post amusingly calls “a more nuanced view.” At least 30 out of 87 had debts of $50,000 or more last year, according to financial documents released yesterday. Some of that included mortgages on investment properties (mortgages on non-rental properties weren't included) and student loans, but at least seven had credit card debt of more than $15,000.

Take Texas Rep. Blake Farenthold, for example. He issued a statement earlier this year noting that, “Like the rest of America, the government needs to tighten its belt and work within its means.” Perhaps he should take his own advice: He had credit card debt of $45,000 to $150,000 last year. Of course, there are also quite a few millionaires in Congress, too, and the freshman class added at least 24 new ones to the total.