Al Gore will always be known for suffering one of the most gut-wrenching losses in Electoral College history, but at least he's found a very nice way to cushion the blow. Instead, of spending eight years dealing with the worst problems the world can throw you, in the years since he became Almost-President, Gore has slowly amassed a personal fortune to rival another famous presidential loser.
Prompted by a rather impressive month that Gore had last January, Ken Wells and Ari Levy of Bloomberg did an analysis of Gore's public financial transactions to try and get a sense of his net worth. When the lifelong public service left office in 2001, the former Congressman-turned-Senator-turned-Vice President, was worth about $1.7 million, much of that inherited from his late father, Sen. Al Gore Sr. Pretty impressive for a "farm boy" from Tennessee but nothing compared to what he's done since then. By turning himself into a technological and environmental evangelist, as well as making taking advantage of few savvy (or lucky) business opportunities, Well and Levy estimate that Gore is now worth about $200 million. Or as they put, he's "Romney Rich."
Not only that, the 65-year-old Gore basically doubled his net worth in January of this year, when he sold his stake in the Current TV network to Al Jazeera. He made around $70 million on that sale, then two weeks later, he sold about $30 million in Apple stock options that he was sitting on. Gore has been an Apple board member since 2003, when the stock was just $7.50 a share. It's now well over $450, even after plummeting more than 20 percent his year.
His impressive streak doesn't even include the money from his best-selling books or Oscar-winning movie An Inconvenient Truth since the proceeds from those go to climate advocacy—but they do help him command speaker fees of $175,000 per event. He has also invested heavily in some successful hedge funds and is a partner at Kleiner Perkins, one of Silicon Valley's most success venture capital firms, and is welcome advisor to a whole host of computer and green technology firms. No, he didn't invent the internet, but he sure made a lot of money off it rise. Money that he almost certainly would have missed out on had a few more hanging chads gone his way.
- Al Gore