Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Even Senators get lucky sometimes

Somehow I missed the following tidbit from a couple of days ago, so perhaps you did, too.

New Hampshire's Republican Senator Judd Gregg, known as a staunch fiscal conservative and chair of the Senate Budget Committee, has won a not inconsiderable amount (to the mind of this fiscal moderate, anyway) in the Powerball lottery.

Gregg won $853,492, which is hardly chump change, although far from the $340 million grand prize. And, since he's from New Hampshire, a state without income taxes, he gets to keep 75% of it. Some guys live right:

Gregg already is a millionaire, according to personal financial records that senators are required to file annually.

His latest filing, which documents his financial records for the calendar year of 2004, shows that Gregg has assets between $2,697,000 and $9,430,000, mostly in an extensive stock and real estate portfolio.

After hearing the lottery news, Sen. Kent Conrad, D-North Dakota, the top Democrat on the Budget Committee, quipped the money should be used to pay down the federal deficit.

Senator Conrad beat me to the punch.

How does Gregg actually plan to spend the money? Some will go to charity, and much of the rest to his wife. Sounds about right to me.

I can't recall any other celebrity or public figure winning a substantial lottery prize before. Can anyone help me out on this?

It surprises me a bit that the relatively wealthy, such as Gregg, might play the lottery, too. Although, why not? When you buy a lottery ticket some say you're basically throwing away your money, and they are mathematically correct in terms of probability. But they are ignoring the vagaries of the human heart; for most people, a lottery ticket is a ticket to a dream. And I guess even fiscally conservative Republican Senators can dream.


At 1:56 PM, October 25, 2005, Blogger JSU said...

He's not that staunch a fiscal conservative: he voted against Coburn's anti-pork amendments last week.

(Sununu, the other NH Senator, voted for.)

At 3:43 PM, October 25, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think J Lo's mom won some huge jackpot a while back, maybe not a lottery though, I think it was at Atlantic City...

At 4:30 PM, October 25, 2005, Blogger MDIJim said...

The lottery is a tax on stupidity. How much has he spent on lottery tickets before winning this prize?

At 5:17 PM, October 25, 2005, Blogger Maddog said...

He took a chance on a $340 Million prize. I don't think anyone could deny that because it's not often that for a buck you can take a chance for that amount of money. You can't win if you don't play.

If he would have won the big prize, critics and relatives would have turned up in droves.

Since he only won $850,000, the critics have shown up.

I guarantee you one thing either way... if I'd won, I'd have no problems with critics or family. Nope, no problem at all. :)

At 7:04 PM, October 25, 2005, Blogger Alex said...


"The lottery is a tax on stupidity. How much has he spent on lottery tickets before winning this prize?"

I'm pretty sure he hasn't spent $853,492. Or even 1% of that, which would be, roughly, a $1 ticket a day for the last 23 years.

No one ever said the lottery was actuarily fair. In expectation, it's a losing proposition. But lottery winners definitely come out in the black.

At 10:20 PM, October 25, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The lottery is a tax on stupidity. How much has he spent on lottery tickets before winning this prize?"

Thanks, I've always wondered how I compare to the rest of the population. Now I know, that dollar a week I spend with no expectation of winning makes me stupid - I'll be sure to note that.

Of course, someone as smart as you *never* spends money on things they enjoy playing around with - this must be true because even the dollar I spend a week is enough to classify me as stupid. Heck, even if I spent 20 dollars a week I don't see an issue - it's my freaking money and I can spend it how I want. I assure you that you spend money in places I would consider it a waste of money (and I am willing to bet that it dwarfs what I spend on the lottery), though that doesn't necessarily make one stupid.

But, thanks for looking out for me and telling me what I can/can't do - I really appreciate it.

At 4:05 AM, October 26, 2005, Blogger Random Numbers said...

Thomas "Hollywood" Henderson, who wrecked his NFL career with his drug use and bottomed out in prison, hit a $28 million lottery jackpot

At 7:51 PM, October 26, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I must say that I appreciate voluntary taxes. Generally I do not pay them, but every now and then I do.


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