The New Democrat Coalition announced the addition of 19 members last week, bringing the centrist group’s membership to 75 House Members.
The new members include Reps. Chris Bell (Texas), Dennis Cardoza (Calif.), Ed Case (Hawaii), Jim Cooper (Tenn.), Artur Davis (Ala.), Denise Majette (Ga.), Mike Michaud (Maine), Brad Miller (N.C.) and David Scott (Ga.). Rep. Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), an NDC executive council member, has also joined. [IMGCAP(1)]
“Clearly we’re still growing and our message is winning; the New Democrats are stronger than ever,” said NDC co-Chairman Adam Smith (Wash.).
Smith added that “the New Democrat Coalition’s freshman class adds to the mounting evidence that the future of our Democratic Party lies in the success of moderate candidates.”
Staffing Up. Weeks after wooing dozens of top-flight Democratic campaign staffers, Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.) has hired three people to fill key positions on his presidential campaign team.
Lieberman, who is scheduled to be in Iowa today, tapped Craig Smith to be his campaign director and senior adviser; Sherry Brown as his campaign chief of staff; and Jano Cabrera as press secretary.
Smith is veteran political operative who served as campaign manager to former Vice President Al Gore’s 2000 White House bid. Cabrera was a spokesman on the 2000 campaign, and Brown is a longtime aide and confidante.
Later in the year, some of Lieberman’s top Senate aides including Dan Gerstein are expected to join the campaign operation in senior roles.
Moving Day. An 8-foot bronze statue of President Dwight Eisenhower is scheduled to arrive on Capitol Hill this spring.
The statue, crafted in Kansas by sculptor Jim Brothers, will be the first to replace an existing sculpture in Statuary Hall. A 1914 marble statue of former Kansas Gov. George Washington Glick currently on display will be returned to the Jayhawk State.
Congress approved the exchange following a 2000 rule change that allows states to swap out their contributions to Statuary Hall.
Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) led the effort to put Eisenhower on the Hill. A Tiahrt spokesman said the statue should arrive in early June.
Rep. Jim Ryun (R-Kan.) is piloting the exchange of a statue of former Kansas Sen. John Ingalls (R) for one of aviator Amelia Earhart.
The Joint Committee on the Library of Congress also approved a request from Alabama to replace a statue of Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry with that of Yellowhammer State native Helen Keller.
— Amy Keller, Mark Preston and Jennifer Yachnin