House Democrats Elect 4 Members to Run Messaging Arm

Cicilline will chair DPCC, and Lieu, Dingell and Cartwright will serve as co-chairs

Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., will lead House Democrats’ messaging arm next Congress as chair of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline will again lead House Democrats’ messaging arm next year, after being elected Thursday by acclamation to a newly created top position at the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee. 

Cicilline will be the new DPCC chair, ranking higher than three DPCC co-chairs the Democratic Caucus also elected Thursday. He had served as one of the three co-chairs for the 2018 cycle. 

Reps. Ted Lieu of California, Debbie Dingell of Michigan and Matt Cartwright of Pennsylvania were elected as the three new co-chairs. Lieu had 161 votes, while Dingell had 144 and Cartwright had 119.

Three other candidates who ran for the position but fell short were Pennsylvania Rep.-elect Chrissy Houlahan with 107 votes, New York Rep. Adriano Espaillat with 90 votes and California Rep. John Garamendi with 44 votes. 

It’s not yet clear how the DPCC chair’s role will differ from that of the co-chairs. 

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi suggested the creation of the DPCC chair position last week, saying it would be part of a larger effort to expand the caucus’s messaging operations.

But the position was in essence a landing spot for Cicilline, who decided to drop out of a race for assistant Democratic leader in deference to New Mexico Rep. Ben Ray Luján, the outgoing Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman, for his work helping Democrats flip the House this year.

Illinois Rep. Cheri Bustos, another current DPCC co-chair, had also been running for assistant leader and dropped out to clear the way for Luján. She ran instead for DCCC chair, a race she won Thursday.

The other departing DPCC co-chair, New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, was elected caucus chairman Wednesday

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