Average Politician Salary and Benefits- A Comprehensive Overview

If you are a political science degree holder and want to become a politician, then this is the right article for you that can give a complete overview of an average politician’s salary.

There are several government departments where a politician can work and contribute a lot. He may work at the local, state, or federal government offices in different capacities. Their level of government and their designation usually dictate their salary.

For example, the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) analyzed in May 2015 that the average politician has earned approximately $42,530.

Now the politicians who were designated at the executive positions, like county commissioner, city manager, or mayor, may have different varieties of salaries that depend upon their jurisdiction. 

And if we talk about the local government executives, their average salary was $86,670 per year but on the other hand, the city manager received a salary of $84,290 per year.

So, if you are also thinking about joining politics as a career, then you may want to know how much do politicians earn and what benefits they receive. 

President’s Salary:

Did you know the US president has paid more than $400,000 a year for his contributions and services as the nation’s commander-in-chief?

Congress has given the president a great salary raise like five times since President George Washington designated his position in 1789. 

Congress previously raised the salary to the current level in 1999, and also the vice president’s salary which was $235,100 per year as of January 2020.

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Salary of Congress Members:

Now let’s talk about the salary of congress members that generally varies according to the job title of the congressman. 

You will be surprised to know that most political leaders, senators, representatives, senior officers, delegates as well as other resident commissioners from Puerto Rico generate an income of $174,000 annually. 

Higher-level politicians of congress are making a bit higher than that. For instance, the speaker of the House earns $223,500 annually as well as the president pro tempore of the Senate, and other majority & minority leaders in the Senate make $193,400 annually.

They receive such a huge paycheck because their responsibilities include making and declaring laws, overseeing public money, approving presidential appointments, and impeaching federal officers, etc.

Chief Justice Salary:

It’s important to keep in mind that not every politician is an elected official. 

Many politicians are now appointed by the President himself. And that specific office is Supreme Court Justice. According to the US court report in 2016, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court receives a salary of $260,700 per year. 

According to another report, the Associate Justice of the Supreme Court earns $249,300 every year. But other staff members that were hired recently simply ensure that operations run timely and properly. 

These workers are responsible to help political leaders in managing several tasks. 

It also includes chiefs of staff whose average salary is $82,150 when they work in local government. The legislative assistants receive a salary of $58,540 when they work in the executive branch of the federal government. 

Press secretaries usually receive $51,340 when they work in local government and executive administrative assistants receive $47,090 when working with local government as well as earn $43,230 when working in state government.

If we talk about the staff assistants, then they usually earn $41,880 in local government as well as $35,540 in state government.

Salary of a Lobbyist:

If you have read political science, you must know that lobbyist is another reputable position in politics through which you can contribute to the wellbeing of society and earn a handsome amount.

As stated by the Washington Post, the basic or starting salary of a lobbyist could be $300,000 per year especially if they have maintained a good connection in the political world.

Salary of a Political Consultant:

Political consultants are also termed political scientists, which play a crucial role in the development of society. They are responsible to do things efficiently and keep the political realm functioning easily without any hassle. According to a report presented in December 2015, the average annual salary of these political scientists was $99,730 but they can also earn more than $162,500.

Salary of a Senator:

Members who belong to the Senate have set their annual wages by Congress every election period. According to the report of 2009, every Senator received a salary of $174,000. But when you compare them with Pro Tempore of the Senate and party leaders, they earned $193,400 every year.


All the members of congress, political leaders, and other professionals receive huge benefits along with salaries. They enjoy healthcare facilities, pension, family death gratuity, annual allowances, and much more. In fact, some highly qualified members also receive free housing. This means politics and political career is highly lucrative if you want to opt for them. So, if you want to adopt it as a career, study all the basic and advanced facts before you get into it.
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