Freshman Rep. Amash takes first place for social media use

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Amash and the second-place winner, veteran Florida GOP Rep. Vern Buchanan, were both fully committed to the challenge, running a head-to-head competition in the last week of the challenge for the most new Twitter followers, YouTube subscribers and Facebook “likes."

This was the third annual Republican New Media Challenge, a contest designed to encourage social media use, develop best practices, and foster friendly competition among House Republicans. Rep. John Fleming (R-La.) won the first two years in a row, but gracefully bowed out of the competition this year.

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), who started the contest and serves as vice chairwoman of the House Republican Conference that oversees it each year, congratulated Amash, Buchanan, and Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.), who came in third and earned a set of steak knives to mark his achievement. He will also get a podcasting microphone to encourage his future efforts.

Amash’s prize is a tablet computer, and Buchanan gets a smartphone.

“The success of the contest should send a strong signal to observers that the Republican Majority in the House is committed to listening, engaging, and staying connected with our constituents,” McMorris Rodgers said in a statement.

According to her office, this year 96 members and committees total participated in the seven-week challenge, generating more than 50,000 new Facebook likes, Twitter followers and YouTube subscribers for GOP conference members.