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Capitol Hill. The government funding bill is one of multiple pieces of legislation the 118th Congress will soon try to pass.

House Dems to pick new messaging chief

Reps. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas), Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) and Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.) are all vying to lead their caucus’ messaging strategy in a critical election year.

House Democrats will hold an election this morning to elect a new Democratic Policy and Communications Committee chair to replace Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Colo.), who was elected assistant leader last month.

Remember, because this can get confusing: There’s the group’s chair and then below that, three co-chairs. We jokingly call the lead chair the “Chair of Chairs.”

Several members told us they think Dingell is the frontrunner. But Escobar and Underwood, who already serve as DPCC co-chairs, have been making late gains.

All three candidates will make their case in a closed-door caucus meeting today. They can also defer to other members to talk on their behalf.

Here’s a look at the candidates:

Dingell: Dingell has spoken to every single member of the Democratic caucus and has led a member whip operation to shore up support.

She previously served as DPCC co-chair in 2018 and 2020 but was term-limited out. The Michigan Democrat also chairs the Heartland Caucus.

On Monday, Dingell passed out Michigan-based chocolates to members to remind them to vote for her.

“I’m working hard,” Dingell told us. “I think it’s important to have a battleground state voice at the table.”

Escobar: Escobar has been making calls to members for weeks and has handed out license plate-themed cookies to promote her candidacy.

Escobar’s campaign is about making communications more efficient, less expensive and more innovative. Escobar will pitch tailoring messages to different platforms to boost each member’s profile and audience.

“I’m feeling good,” Escobar told us. “I’m ready to have this election behind us.”

Underwood: Underwood currently serves as DPCC co-chair, having held the position since 2022.

Underwood is the first Black woman elected to Democratic leadership since Rep. Shirley Chisholm (N.Y.) in the 1970s.

Underwood declined to comment on the race.

Other Democratic leadership news: Wonder what the previous DPCC chair is up to? Now-Assistant Leader Neguse hosted a dinner conversation with FTC Chair Lina Khan Monday night. More than 50 Democratic members attended, including Reps. Steny Hoyer (Md.), Steven Horsford (Nev.) and Pramila Jayapal (Wash.).

– Mica Soellner

Correction: We incorrectly said Rep. Lauren Underwood is the first Black woman serving in House Democratic leadership since the 1970s. She’s the first Black woman elected to House Democratic leadership in decades.

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Editorial photos provided by Getty Images. Political ads courtesy of AdImpact.