Pressley Likely First MA Black Congresswoman

By Free Radical

Ayanna Pressley is slated to become the first ever Black Congresswoman in Massachusetts.

Ayanna Pressley is slated to become the first ever Black Congresswoman in Massachusetts.

On Tuesday, Boston Councilwoman Ayanna Pressley scored a surprise victory in the Massachusetts 7th District Congressional Democratic primary race. In winning, she defeated the 10-term incumbent Michael Capuano. She is now poised to become Massachusetts’s first ever Black Congresswoman, as there is no Republican challenger in the general election.

Capuano is a long-standing liberal and both candidates admitted that they share similar ground on most legislation. Capuano was gracious in his concession speech in which he told his supporters, “I’m sorry it didn’t work out, but this is life, and this is O.K. America’s going to be O.K. Ayanna Pressley is going to be a good congresswoman, and I will tell you that Massachusetts will be well served.”

While they had few ideological differences, the issue of representation came to the fore in the race. The 7th District is the only one in Massachusetts that has a majority nonwhite population

In her campaign, Pressley stressed that voting appropriately is not enough in the era of Trump. With repeated assaults on people of color, they need representation that looks like them and who can more closely identify with their experiences

Pressley joins a list of Black progressive candidates who can potentially shake up the political establishment. Andrew Gillum’s and Stacey Abrams’s Democratic gubernatorial primary victories in Florida and Georgia respectively have made national headlines in recent weeks. There have also been impressive mayoral victories in San Francisco, New Orleans, and Charlotte.

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