President Barack Obama has consistently talked about “income inequality” and how it has only gotten worse. On Saturday, Vice President Joe Biden delivered a national plea for a minimum wage increase to $10.10 per hour.
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) attends an event at the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, March 21, 2014 in Los Angeles. (Jason Merritt/Getty Images for UCLA)
During his successful 2012 re-election campaign, Obama said several times that he was a “warrior for the middle class.”
But a new analysis from the Associated Press found that when it comes to the House of Representatives, the wealthiest vote for Democrats.
Of the 10 richest congressional districts, eight are represented by Democrats, including the top six.
The bulk of these districts are along the east and west coasts, primarily in New York and California.
The wealthiest congressional district in the U.S. is New York's 12th district, which includes Manhattan's Upper East Side, as well as parts of Queens and Brooklyn. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) is serving her 11th term representing that district where the per capita income is $75,479.
The second spot belongs to Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), whose district includes the Los Angeles area and the per capita income is $61,273.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) represents a San Francisco district that comes in at eighth place.
The financial industry on the East Coast and tech industry on the West Coast frequently have deep ties with the federal government and don't mind seeing increased state power, which could offer an incentive to vote Democrat, said Ian Murray, vice president for strategy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
“Often, a husband and wife are both making money from the government, directly and indirectly,” said Murray, who is the author of “Stealing You Blind: How Government Fatcats are Getting Rich off of You.”
He added that people become wealthy by advising Wall Street on compliance, thus expansive government regulations can be lucrative.
“The financial industry, Wall Street, is a very heavily regulated industry,” Murray said. “So these firms not only pay top dollar to the wealth creators, but they pay high salaries to lawyers to deal with compliance.”
The AP reported that Democrats say the “party of the rich” label is more about policies than constituents. The only Republicans on the list are Reps. Leonard Lance of New Jersey's 7th District and Frank Wolfe of Virginia, whose district is in the affluent Washington, D.C. suburbs., Their districts are ranked seventh and 10 respectively.
The 10 richest House districts, according to the AP, are:
1. New York 12
Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Democrat
Per capita income: $75,479
2. California 33
Rep. Henry Waxman, Democrat
Per capita income: $61,273
3. New York 10
Rep. Jerry Nadler, Democrat
Per capita income: $56,138
4. California 18
Rep. Anna Eshoo, Democrat
Per capita income: $ 54,182
5. Connecticut 4
Rep. Jim Himes, Democrat
Per capita income: $50,732
6. Virginia 8
Rep. Jim Moran, Democrat
Per capita income: $50,210
7. New Jersey 7
Rep. Leonard Lance, Republican
Per capita income: $48,556
8. California 12
Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Democrat
Per capita income: $48,523
9. New York 3
Rep. Steve Israel, Democrat
Per capita income: $47,991
10. Virginia 10
Rep. Frank Wolf, Republican
Per capita income: $47,281