All politics is local.
This maxim, while grammatically cumbersome, has nevertheless inspired no fewer than two blog titles in our congressional district and is the raison d'etre for a good share of our elected officials' payrolls.
Staffers for politicians don't spend most of their time researching issues, honing arguments or drafting legislation. Instead, they're fielding concerns about Medicare, unemployment checks and thickets of federal bureaucracy.
The busy bees in Rep. Bill Owens' office have been hard at work — and the Owens office has the numbers to prove it.
In the first quarter of 2012, they've secured $1,739,718.34 in tax breaks and benefits that were owed to constituents in the congressional district, according to Mr. Owens' office.
“Responding to constituent concerns and helping them to navigate the federal bureaucracy is one of the most important things I can do,” Mr. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, said in a news release.
They've responded to 12,932 pieces of correspondence this year and, since he won his first election in 2009, has responded to 79,051.
In that time, he's secured $4,776,761.93 in tax breaks and benefits.
All politics is local indeed — and can be quantified, down to the penny.