One reason so many of our national policies seem to benefit the wealthy is that so many of the wealthy help make our nation's policies.
Washington, D.C., nosed out San Jose, Calif., as the nation’s highest-income metropolitan region, fueled mainly by its army of attorneys, consultants, lobbyists, and outside government contractors.
Census data for 2010 show median household income was $84,523 in the D.C. area, compared with $83,944 for the San Jose region, the epicenter of Silicon Valley. Both numbers are well above the median income of about $50,000 for the nation as a whole. While Washington’s incomes in 2010 were lower than in 2009, paychecks in the D.C. region have been more stable overall.
While government work helps account for Washington’s lower jobless rate, its heftier income level is due to the lawyers, lobbyists, and contractors whose salaries far outstrip their public-sector counterparts.
Need a job? Need a raise?
Become a lobbyist.