Government and International Relations Honors Papers

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MaryAnne Borelli

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The 2018 Midterm Election was labelled the ‘blue wave’ as the Democratic Party won the House majority. However during this expected blue wave, many did not anticipate a fight within the Democratic party itself. Massachusetts 7th Congressional District was one backdrop to this fight as then Boston City Councilor, Ayanna Pressley challenged ten term incumbent Michael Capuano to represent the first and only majority minority district in the commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Following the victory of Ayanna Pressley, the first woman of color to represent Massachusetts in Congress, I applied an intersectional analysis to study how and why she won. To do so I examined the 7th Congressional District, the 2018 Democratic primary, and Pressley’s political strategies finding that Pressley’s new standards of representation allowed her to build relationships that furthered her success.



The views expressed in this paper are solely those of the author.