Neil Gorsuch is entering his third day of a public job interview, hoping to secure one of the most elite and sought-after titles in American history.
But here’s a question: how much does the job of Supreme Court justice actually pay?
As of this year, an associate justice of the high court pulls down a respectable $251,800. (The Chief Justice gets an extra bump, making an annual $262,300).
That sounds like a nice check, but it’s also dramatically less than a top lawyer in the lucrative market of Washington D.C. could expect to make in private practice. A survey back in 2012 found that the average compensation for a partner at a Washington D.C. law firm was nearly $800,000.
But you shouldn’t exactly start sending care packages to members of the bench, either.
The Center for Public Integrity analyzed the financial disclosures of the sitting justices last year and found that at least six had a net worth of at least $1 million.
The wealthiest one on the list: Stephen Breyer, who is worth at least $6.1 million and as much as $16 million, thanks in part to a chunk of publishing company stock and properties in New Hampshire and the Caribbean.
Most of the justices also reported earning tens of thousands of dollars from speaking and teaching gigs as well as book deals. They’re also well-traveled: all also took at least one major trip sponsored by another organization.
While a seat on the court might win the justices a good living and a storied place in history, though, it doesn’t exactly make its members famous — by popular standards, anyway.
In fact, a new C-SPAN poll found that 57 percent of U.S. voters can’t name a single sitting Supreme Court justice.