Ayanna Pressley Crushes Mike Capuano in Democratic Tilt for Congress

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2018/09/05/ayanna-pressley-crushes-mike-capuano-in-democratic-tilt-for-congress/

Boston city councilor Ayanna Pressley upended liberal U.S. Representative Michael Capuana (D-Somerville) with an appeal to racial identity politics and a promise to try to abolish the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Pressley beat the 10-term congressman 59-41 percent in the Seventh Congressional District on Tuesday. She is now the presumptive next member of Congress from the district, since there is no Republican challenger in the general election in November.

During her victory speech Pressley at one point led the crowd of supporters in a call-and-response of “Change can’t wait.”

“Ours was truly a people-powered, grassroots campaign launched just 195 days ago that dared to do what Massachusetts Democrats aren’t supposed to do,” Pressley said, according to State House News Service. “… I knew we would be essentially alone, I knew we would find no favor with the Democratic establishment both here at home and in Washington and I knew we would have to fight for every dollar, every volunteer, every door, every voter. I knew I would be demonized as entitled and what no woman can ever be — ambitious. But change can’t wait.”

Capuano delivered a brief concession speech congratulating Pressley, saying she will be a good member of Congress, and attributing his loss to anger at what’s going on in Washington and a desire for change.

“I’m sorry it didn’t work out, but this is life and this is O.K.,” Capuano said, according to State House News Service. “America is going to be OK. Ayanna Pressley is going to be a good congresswoman and, I can tell you, Massachusetts will be well served.”

The two candidates found little to disagree on during the campaign, and at one point Pressley said her votes would be similar to Capuana’s. But she argued that in a congressional district where most people are members of racial minorities, a member of a racial minority should represent them. Pressley is black, while Capuano is part Italian and part Irish.

All members of Congress representing Massachusetts are Democrats. Several other Democratic incumbents faced primary challenges Tuesday, but all of them won comfortably.