Aug 3, 2022 - Politics & Policy

House Dems' social media insurgents

Data: U.S. House of Representatives; Chart: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) and three members of the Jan. 6 committee added the most social media followers across four platforms in July, according to a tally by Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.).

Why it matters: The thirteenth annual "Member Online All-Star Competition" reveals how Democratic leadership is prioritizing social media messaging as a way to communicate achievements ahead of the midterms.

  • The results also provide a window into the members — and issues — gaining the most attention and influence in a month dominated by the Jan. 6 committee hearings and the aftermath of the Supreme Court's decision overturning Roe v Wade.

By the numbers: Between July 7 and July 27, Pelosi added the most new followers with 58,000 spread across Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Rep. Elaine Luria (D-Va.) came in second place, with 50,000 new followers, mostly on Twitter.

  • Swalwell, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) and Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) came in third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
  • Rep. Deborah Ross (D-N.C.) gained 1,767 new followers, the most of any freshman member.

Between the lines: Excluding House leadership, the All-Star list would also include Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.), who gained 23,521 followers, in the top five.

  • Both Schiff and Porter have been floated as candidates for leadership positions— including, in Schiff's case, as a potential successor to Pelosi.

The most widely shared posts featured hot-button issues like Jan. 6 findings and legislation codifying abortion and marriage rights.

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