Name: Harry Reid
Born: December 2, 1939
Occupation: Lawyer, Politician, Senate Democrat Minority Leader
Harry Reid is the son of a Nevada miner and laundress, with two older brothers and one younger brother. The home he was raised in in Searchlight, Nevada, had no indoor toilet, telephone or hot water. His hometown of Searchlight didn’t even have a high school, so Reid lived with relatives in Henderson, Nevada, 40 miles away, to go to high school.
After playing football and boxing in high school, Reid attended Southern Utah University and then Utah State University for his undergraduate degrees in political science and history. His high school boxing coach was future Nevada governor Mike O’Callaghan who may be responsible for Reid’s early interest in politics. Reid went on to get his law degree from George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C. and worked for the United States Capitol Police while completing his degree.
With his law degree in hand, Reid returned to Nevada and went to work as the city attorney in Henderson. In 1968, he was elected to the Nevada legislature and in 1970 his former boxing coach asked him to be his running mate for the governor’s office. Reid served as Callaghan’s lieutenant governor until 1974 and then ran for U.S. Senate. He lost that election and one a year later to be the mayor of Las Vegas.
From 1977 to 1981, Reid served as chairman of the Nevada Gaming Commission where he famously helped the FBI arrest Jack Gordon who tried to bribe Reid to bring a new game to the casinos. In 1982, after Nevada qualified for a second seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, Reid won the seat representing the area including Las Vegas. He held the office for four years and then ran for the U.S. Senate.
Reid was first elected to the senate in 1986 and in 1999 became part of the Senate’s Democratic leadership, serving as party whip. He served as majority leader of the senate from 2008 to 2015. In March, 2015, Reid announced he would not seek re-election in the 2016 election.
As Senate leader, Reid has been a controversial figure, often disagreeing openly with President Barack Obama. He also admits to lying during 2012 election cycle, claiming Republican candidate Mitt Romney had not paid income taxes for 10 years.
The most recent Senate financial disclosure forms put Reid’s net worth at $2.9 million.
How much is $2.9 million?
Reid’s annual salary as U.S. Senator and member of senate leadership is just under $200,000 a year, so with $2.9 million, he can easily keep up his standard of living for the next 15 years.