Washington, DC – This morning, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Senator Ron Johnson has been flying on “a private plane owned by his adult children to travel between Wisconsin and Washington, D.C.” instead of flying commercial during the pandemic. The questionable private plane use comes as Johnson has systematically downplayed the pandemic, even calling coverage of it “panic porn.”
The use of the private plane is just the latest of many questionable financial arrangements between Johnson, his adult children, and the trust Johnson established which conceals his family’s wealth and spending.
“For years Ron Johnson has used his wealth and power to bend the rules to his own family’s financial benefit,” said Kyle Herrig, Executive Director of the Congressional Integrity Project. “Whether it was fighting for a tax loophole that would benefit businesses like his family’s, his kids getting preferential treatment to access millions in taxpayer funds or Johnson structuring his finances to evade disclosure; Ron Johnson is corrupt to the core.”
Earlier this month, The Congressional Integrity Project released, “All in The Family: The Johnsons, Corruption & Nepotism” a report detailing how the Johnsons have profited off their patriarch’s political career.
- Through a trust fund established by Johnson, his adult children were able to buy an investment property from a campaign donor. Later, the children’s company received special treatment from a state agency led by another Johnson campaign donor to secure questionable “historic” designations and up to $2.1 million in tax credits for the investment property, even though they did not follow the rules and their application should have been disqualified.
- Johnson leveraged his position as the deciding vote on the 2017 tax bill to increase the value of his family business, which he promptly began trying to sell after the bill became law (and sold it right before Covid-19 tanked the economy).
- Johnson’s estimated net worth in 2019 was between $18,101,013 and $84,366,000, which averages $51,233,506.50, making Johnson one of the richest Members of Congress. His likely net worth has increased by more than 115% since he was sworn into the Senate in 2011.
The Congressional Integrity Project’s report on the Johnsons’ corruption came as Johnson used his position as the Chair of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee to smear a political opponent’s family.