Dingell hires former aides

K Street Democrats are popular not just with companies trying to make inroads with the new majority - but with the new majority itself as well.

Lobbyists are expected to help fill the additional staff slots Democrats now have, and the migration has already begun.

Rep. John Dingell (D-Mich.), who will be the chairman of the Energy and Commerce committee, yesterday announced that two former aides are rejoining his staff.

Dennis Fitzgibbons, now the top lobbyist at DaimlerChrysler, will be chief of staff to the committee. He was minority deputy staff director when he left in 2000 to join the automaker.

Gregg Rothschild, now a vice president and policy counsel at Verizon, will be the new chief counsel to Energy and Commerce. He had previously been the minority counsel.