He may be the king of Queens, but the borough's Democratic Party boss has his castle in Virginia.
Rep. Joe Crowley, who has the power to remake the political landscape in the borough -- as when he handpicked a candidate yesterday to replace Anthony Weiner -- actually lives 250 miles away with his family in Virginia, The Post has learned.
The Crowleys live in an expansive home in the leafy Washington suburb of Arlington, Va., where his three kids attend the community's nationally renowned public schools -- shunning New York City's educational system, property records show.
Crowley was spied yesterday in his driveway, keying into his Ford Fiesta, which bears a Virginia license plate and a bumper sticker that proclaims one of his kids is an honor student at a nearby middle school.
But Crowley keeps a toehold in the borough, maintaining ownership of a longtime family home on 65th Street in Woodside -- though neighbors on the block don't know who he is. That's not surprising, since he bought his house in Virginia for $690,000 in 2004, six years after he went to Congress.
His decision to raise his family in the DC suburbs rather than Queens raises eyebrows because of his role as the county's powerful Democratic Party chairman, which requires him to oversee politics throughout the borough, and not just tend to his congressional duties.
"Given his dual role, he needs to spend more time in Queens. The process is better served having a more present party leader in the borough," said Dick Dadey, executive director of Citizens Union.
University of Virginia political science Professor Larry Sabato said that where a congressman decides to lay down family roots has been hotly debated for years.
Federal law requires only that a member of Congress inhabit the state they represent when they run for election.
"But the fact that Crowley is a powerful party boss in an important part of New York City makes it more of an issue," Sabato said.
Crowley, through a spokeswoman, defended his decision to relocate his wife and kids so that he could spend more time with them.
"Joe is a proven leader and effective representative who consistently delivers for his district," his spokeswoman, Courtney Gidner, said in a statement.
"He is also a devoted husband and father to three young kids who he wants to spend time with during the work week. He is strongly committed to both his job and family."
But most representatives from the city keep their families in their home districts, relying on improvised living arrangements in the capital when the House is in session -- and making the relatively short hop home on weekends.
Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Queens/LI), who is seeking to grab part of Weiner's old district if the seat is eliminated, has the most peculiar living arrangement. He resides in Roslyn Heights, but when in DC, he sleeps in a one-bedroom houseboat -- called the Unsinkable.
Ackerman released a statement saying he's lived in Queens or Nassau County his entire life.
"Staying on a houseboat when in DC shows that I'm not putting down roots in Washington. My family lives in the district, kids always attended Queens public schools and I never considered staying in DC or moving the family to Washington," Ackerman said.
"I won't even spend weekends in DC. I'm on the shuttle back to New York before the sound of the last gavel stops reverberating."