Candidate Watch Massachusetts

Candidate Watch Massachusetts

MA-07: Ayanna Pressley

Historic New England Race to Be Won

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ayanna pressley

A five-term Boston City Council member, 44-year old African-American Democrat Ayanna Pressley decisively defeated 10-term, 66-year old Democratic incumbent Michael Capuano in his first contested primary in two decades for MA’s Congressional 7th District (59% to 41%). Pressley, going against conventional wisdom, ran against a respected Democrat with similar views on most issues, and still won. Most critics watching the 7th district race noted it was more about different approaches for this “majority-minority” district. As Pressley says: “voting the right way is one thing, but I want to lead, and I want to legislate our values.”

Ayanna Pressley was raised on the north side of Chicago by a single mother, who became a community organizer with the Chicago Urban League working for tenant’s rights. Pressley attended a private school where she was a competitive debator, cheerleader, and voted the “most likely to be mayor of Chicago.” Pressley went on to attend Boston University, but left school to work full-time to support her mother.

Pressley never completed her college degree but that did not stop her. She worked as a senior aide on Capitol Hill and, in 2009, she became the first woman of color ever elected to the Boston City Council. Pressley is an experienced leader running for Congress to continue her fight for Boston working families. She has worked to help girls and women achieve equality, and she is a pro-choice champion. Emily’s List honored her with the Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award in 2015.

Pressley has what it takes to deliver this seat for the Democrats, with no Republican running against her. If she wins, New England and Massachusetts will be sending their first African American woman to Congress! Moreover, Pressley could be joined by another African American woman if Connecticut’s 5th district Jahana Hayes wins, as projected. The two will make history together! We encourage you to learn more about Pressley and her campaign at her website: