In primary stunner, challenger unseats incumbent Democratic Rep. Capuano in MA

Marsha Scott
September 6, 2018

During the campaign, Capuano touted his credentials as an "unabashed liberal", but he found himself competing with Pressley over who was the more progressive candidate. REUTERS/Brian SnyderIncumbent U.S. Representative Mike Capuano (D-MA) speaks to reporters after voting in the Massachusetts Primary Election in Somerville, Massachusetts, U.S., September 4, 2018.

According to her bio, Ayanna Pressley is an advocate, a policy-maker, an activist, and survivor. She routed 10-term Congressman Michael Capuano in an upset that's made headlines nationwide.

But here was Ayanna Pressley, a Boston City Council member and rising Democratic star, exhorting volunteers in a Cambridge restaurant with an impassioned performance style she learned as a child at her grandfather's storefront Baptist church in Chicago.

The success of left-leaning minority Democratic candidates has not been limited to federal races.

Pressley told supporters after her win that "change is on the way".

In the general election, Ms. Pressley will be heavily favored in the 7th Congressional District, which covers parts of Boston and its heavily Democratic suburbs and that backed Hillary Clinton with 84 percent of its vote in the 2016 presidential race.

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Trump has angered Democrats with comments describing immigrants as criminals, attacks on black professional athletes protesting against racism and Twitter slaps at female politicians. The challenge from Pressley, the first black woman to serve on the council, had drawn some comparisons to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who defeated 10-term New York Rep. Joe Crowley in a stunning upset in a Democratic primary in June. Shortly after her win, Ocasio-Cortez endorsed Pressley. She also would be the first person of color to ever represent the state in Congress.

Pressley, who represents the 7th district, one of Massachusetts' most diverse, has advocated for a progressive agenda, which includes abolishing ICE, increased mental health care services in schools and medicare for all.

"After an intense few days on the trail and a unity event this morning, Councilor Pressley is dealing with some symptoms of dehydration and exhaustion", Campaign manager Sarah Groh said in an email to media. "It does point to a generational shift and this notion that a lot of folks are not waiting their turn in the way they might have years ago".

Bookman, who volunteered to drive voters to the polls on Tuesday for Pressley, said those she met were excited by her candidacy, feeling a certain kinship. "Ours was truly a people powered, grassroots campaign. that dared to do what Massachusetts Democrats aren't supposed to do".

In the secretary of state race, we saw another challenge to the establishment in a sometimes-fiery contest between longtime incumbent Bill Galvin and energetic challenger Josh Zakim.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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