Black ExperiencePolitics

Black Councilwoman Upsets Congressional Incumbent in Mass. Democratic Primary

Ayanna Pressley, who broke barriers in 2009 when she became the first woman of color elected to the Boston City Council, beat 10-time incumbent Democratic Rep. Mike Capuano Tuesday to win the Democratic nomination for Massachusetts’ 7th Congressional District.

If she wins in November, Pressley, 44, will become the only Black member of the state’s mostly male congressional delegation.

“I’ve been told to wait my turn,” Pressley said at a campaign event earlier this year. “I’ve been called a traitor for challenging an incumbent, told simply this isn’t the way things are done here.”

She is the second woman of color this election cycle to oust a venerable Democrat, following Puerto Rican socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’ stunning victory in June over incumbent Rep. and Democratic Caucus Chair Joe Crowley in New York’s 14th Congressional District.

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