The congresswoman “is more familiar with Facebook,” Adofo said, explaining the many cross-links posted on Twitter from the other social media site. “She also, I think, has a personal profile on Facebook.”

While she is still acclimating to Twitter, Schakowsky recognizes the benefits of the micro-blogging tool. This year, she used it to help raise awareness for an issue she is passionate about: the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps.

This year, Schakowsky, who also participated in the food stamp challenge — a pledge to live on food stamps for a week — used her Twitter account to keep her almost 5,000 followers in the loop.

Schakowsky took recipe suggestions from her followers, printed out the recipes and carried them around with her all day.

“And she actually took it to a press conference and kind of waved around everyone’s tweets saying, ‘Hey, this is what I got on Twitter and these are the suggestions I got,’” Adofo said. “So she really did take people’s suggestions when she developed how she would plan out her week with the food stamp challenge.”

Schakowsky has also been helped along in her initial uncertainty about Twitter by Democratic leadership, who have hosted an annual social media competition for members for the past two years. 

“She was very gung-ho about that [this year],” Adofo said. “She placed pretty well.”