Locally, at least, that answer appears to be Jerry Nadler.
According to a recent report on staff retention, fully 90% of Mr. Nadler’s staffers in the third quarter of 2011 were there in the third quarter of 2009. This ranks Mr. Nadler in the top ten of level of devotion among members of Congress. Michael Capuano, a liberal Democrat from Boston, tops the list with a 94% retention rating. Buffalo’s Brian Higgins also makes the Top 20 among his colleagues with a 84 percent retention rate.
So surely aspiring Hill staffers want to know which offices to avoid if they can’t get a coveted spot with Team Nadler. And the answer: Michelle Bachmann. Under 30 percent of her staffers with her in the fall of last year were there in 2009. Only a handful of members of Congress come out worse, including Ohio’s Betty Sutton, who holds the seat that was once held by Sherrod Brown. Only 19 percent of her staffers are still on hand.
The Sunlight Foundation does have a separate study of how members of Congress are able to hold onto policy aides–those staffers that are senior-most in a member’s office and thus help lawmakers draft legislation and formulate policy positions.
On this matter, it appears as if Brooklyn’s Ed Towns is something of the anti-Nadler: only a third of his policy staffers who were there two years ago remain.