Ayanna Pressley Defeats Rep. Mike Capuano In Democratic Primary

Sean Reid
September 5, 2018

"The 44-year-old Pressley's challenge to Capuano, himself a longtime progressive Democrat, sent a resounding sign that the voters in the Seventh Congressional District - a liberal area encompassing parts of Boston and Cambridge - were ready for a change". Though in both primaries a woman of color defeated a white man who had been in Congress for decades, the MA race does not fit the narrative of a progressive political newcomer unseating an Establishment Democrat.

Plus, he had received the backing of local party officials, the Congressional Black Caucus PAC and even from Deval Patrick, the state's first African-American governor. Pressley has drawn comparisons to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Althea Garrison wasn't on anyone's ballot on Tuesday, but Boston City Councilor Ayanna Pressley's stunning victory over Representative Michael Capuano pushed Garrison closer to a seat on the council.

She also supports measures deemed radical by many, including abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a federal agency that has enforced President Trump's crackdown on illegal migrants. Shortly after her win, Ocasio-Cortez endorsed Pressley.


In fact, Pressley was the first black woman elected to the city's council and now, running unopposed, will be the first black woman MA sends to Congress. "These are the kind of factors that Democrats need to have over the next two months if they are going to pull off victories in some of those really competitive races".

There is no Republican challenger in the November general election.

But both Pressley and Capuano admit there's likely no difference between them in terms of the way they'll vote in Congress, and moreover, neither one has expressed outright opposition against Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi.

State lawmakers designated the district as the first majority-minority district in MA.


Massachusetts' last Democratic primary upset came in 2014, when Seth Moulton defeated Rep. John Tierney in the state's 6th Congressional District.

"This is not just about resisting and affronting Trump", Pressley said, per the Times.

MA senator Elizabeth Warren, a favourite to run in the 2020 Presidential election, was uncontested for the state's Democratic nomination. Kennedy, the grandson of the late U.S. Sen.

However, unlike Crowley, Capuano had fiercely contested the MA race by racking up endorsements, attending debates and highlighting his consistently liberal voting record in one of the most Democratic districts in a traditionally Democratic state. She ousted 10-term New York Rep. Joe Crowley in a Democratic primary in June. "She will serve the district well in Congress".


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