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Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Two Black congressional staff associations published an open letter Friday calling for more diversity, better conditions and "a stronger college-to-Congress pipeline" for staffers at Capitol Hill.

Why it matters: While Congress swore in its most racially and ethnically diverse congressional class in history this year, congressional staffs remain "overwhelmingly white," the letter says.

  • “We believe that if the United States Congress wants to hold steadfast to its representative form of government, then congressional staffers hired to construct and inform legislation should be reflective of the United States’ population.”

The big picture: The U.S. population is roughly 13% Black, compared with only 3% of Senate staffers, per the letter.

  • Zoom in: Thirty-eight percent of the staff members for Senate Democrats identify as non-Caucasian — up from 35% in 2020, according to data from the caucus reported by Axios' Stef Kight in July. Sens. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) have the least-white staff teams.

The letter, written by the Congressional Black Associates and the Senate Black Legislative Staff Caucus, outlined steps for change:

  • Strengthening college-to-Congress pipeline by fostering relationships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Black Student Unions (BSUs) and other diverse organizations on college campuses.
  • Offering better career opportunities to Black staffers so they can "develop and display their talents" and be promoted to higher positions.
  • Providing better pay to all staffers to offset the high cost of living.
  • Ensuring lawmakers hire diverse staffs that reflect their constituencies.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated Dec 8, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Congressional leaders clinch support for crucial defense bill, debt limit votes

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer passes waiting reporters on Tuesday. Photo: Eric Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Congress has found a shortcut to pass its annual defense funding bill and raise the debt limit.

Driving the news: The House voted Tuesday night on two major bills — one creating a one-time, fast-track process for the Senate to raise the debt ceiling with just 51 votes, and another passing its annual defense bill.

Mike Allen, author of AM
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

First look: Anita Dunn advises Dems on economy message for '22

Signs from a President Biden event yesterday in Kansas City, Mo. Photo: Chase Castor/Bloomberg via Getty Images

In a midterm preview, top Democratic strategist Anita Dunn advises the party's House and Senate members to frame Republicans "as being against the economic interests of working Americans."

What she's saying: "Explicitly framing Republicans as opposing policies to lower costs does better than simply framing Republicans as the 'party of no,'" Dunn, White House senior adviser until August, writes in the memo.

JPMorgan: "Full global recovery" in 2022

Photo: Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images

JPMorgan Chase Global Research says in a forecast to clients: "2022 will be the year of a full global recovery, an end of the global pandemic, and a return to normal conditions we had prior to the COVID-19 outbreak."

The big picture: The bullish report sees "a return of global mobility, and a release of pent-up demand from consumers (e.g. travel, services)."