Real Income Inequality: A Look at the Income Gap Between Washington D.C. and the Rest of America

Posted: Jan 28, 2014 1:15 PM
Real Income Inequality: A Look at the Income Gap Between Washington D.C. and the Rest of America

By now we're all well aware President Obama will focus heavily on "income inequality" in America tonight during his State of the Union Address, but one thing you won't hear the President talk about is the income disparity between Washington D.C. and the rest of America.

Since the economic collapse of 2008, Washington D.C. and its surrounding areas have remained nearly untouched. In fact, Washington is booming as the rest of the country continues to suffer. The median household income in Washington D.C. is close to $20,000 higher than the median household income in the United States.

In addition, the country's richest counties are just outside of Washington D.C.

The economy may still be struggling to break out in much of the country, but not in Washington, where local federal spending has doubled over the past decade, boosting federal agency employment and contract spending. Lawyers and lobbyists have rolled in from anywhere and everywhere. The local unemployment rate of 5.5% lies well below the national average. It’s also where median household income levels are the highest in the country.

For the second consecutive year, Loudoun County, Va., a 520-square-mile suburban mass that sits 46 miles from the White House, weighs in as America’s richest county.

While Loudoun ranks at the top, it’s far from alone on the list of wealthiest counties that surround Washington. In fact, it’s just the beginning. The neighboring counties of Falls Church City, Fairfax, Arlington and Prince William in Virginia and Howard County in Maryland all make the cut, giving the D.C. area six of the nation’s ten wealthiest counties. All boast median household incomes between $93,000 and $117,000 annually.

It's no wonder 80.8 percent of those living in D.C. approve of the job President Obama did in 2013.

That is the result of Gallup's polling on Obama's job approval in 2013, which showed that 80.8 percent of the residents of the District of Columbia approved of the job he was doing as president.

Obama's third highest approval--57.0 percent--came in Maryland, which borders Washington, D.C., and encompasses many Washington suburbs.

“The majority of Americans oppose Obamacare, abusive federal agencies, and many of the mandates coming out of Washington. They favor a government that lives within their means and respects their individual liberties. However, the administration’s imperial disregard for the will of the people and their elected representatives is a tell-tale symptom of the biggest inequality gap in America: between the way the ruling elites in Washington, D.C. treat themselves and the way they treat American families," Tea Party Patriots co-founder Jenny Beth Martin said in a statement. “Many Members of Congress are millionaires, but they don’t seem to understand how to manage the budget. They go on month-long taxpayer funded vacations, while the American people can’t even find work. They force mandates on Americans that they, themselves, refuse to live by and then claim they are serving the people."

As Obama continues his income inequality crusade, here's an important reminder: the gap between rich and poor has grown to its widest since the Great Depression under his leadership.

The wealth that has turned Washington D.C. into a boomtown, while creating an extreme income gap with the rest of the country, is a direct result of massive government spending. A new Rasmussen Report shows Americans believe less government, not more, will help close the income gap between rich and poor, a solution Obama isn't likely to consider during his 2014 State of the Union speech.

President Obama is expected to map out his agenda for reducing income inequality in his State of the Union speech tomorrow night. Most voters agree that income inequality is a serious problem in America today but don’t think government action is the best solution.

But when asked which would do more to close the income gap in America, 59% choose less government involvement in the economy over more government action. Thirty-three percent (33%) think increased government involvement in the economy would do more to close the income gap.

Recommended Townhall Video