Louis endorsement of Capuano Says it all about race

ANALYSIS

By Josh Resnek

In a congressional race that is all about race Mike Capuano’s endorsement by John Lewis says it all.

Lewis, by far, is the most distinguished black voice in Congress.

He walked the walk with the Reverend Martin Luther King and over the decades he has become a mountain of man in the US Congress when it comes to race.

That he should endorse Capuano over Boston City Councillor Ayanna Pressley kind of says it all.

She is black. She is angry. She is a woman who has experienced all the horrors associated with being a black woman, she has overcome adversity and she is a big voice for women, for blacks, for gays, for hundreds of thousands in the district who are people of color and ethnicity.

“Change can’t wait,” she likes to say.

“We must acknowledge that issues like systemic racism, economic inequality, and the achievement gap are the result of manmade policies. But if they were created by man, they can be disrupted by this wo-man,” she said during a campaign stop in Roxbury last week.

The speech — part sermon, part call-to-arms — showed why Capuano, despite winning high marks from liberal interest groups, has to work hard to defend his deep-blue seat in Congress for the first time since he won it in 1998. Pressley, widely regarded as a rising star in Democratic politics, seems perfectly positioned to capture the restive energy animating the grass-roots of the party in a year that has seen massive activism around the #metoo movement, women’s marches, gun control, and Black Lives Matter — not to mention a hunger for diverse, fresh voices to challenge President Trump.

This is Michael Levenson writing in the Boston Globe from the Globe’s point of view about the election scene coming up.

The giver of sermons, black and woman should beat the 20 year congressman from Somerville who walks thew walk and talks the talk about every liberal, decent program and posturing know to an American politician.

No one can outliberal Capuano.

His means attention paid to everyone that matters in his district which is alternately one off the richest and best educated as well as poor and uneducated and dangerous.

Capuano hasn’t been hiding in a congressional glass house for the past 20 years.

You don’t get the endorsement of a black legend like Lewis because you aren’t the real thing – and this is Pressley’s problem in attempting to unseat someone who has worked for blacks all his political life.

Capuano doesn’t give sermons.

He talks about reality, always.

He has been endorsed by Mayor Marty Walsh and former governor Deval Patrick.

Those are hefty achievements for a white man from Somerville.

Experts who study elections say the dynamic is changing – that Pressley has the edge because of her gender and her life experience.

“He’s facing an electorate that’s uneasy, not about him, but about the state of the country. Do they want someone with a little more fight and a little more passion to go to Washington to wage battle for them? Do they want someone — because of her age, race, or background — that might relate a little more to their personal struggles or the change they’re looking for?” Cutter said. “That’s the big question on the table, and it’s not clear right now whether it’s enough to unseat an incumbent in a primary this cycle,”Levenson reported in the Globe.

“I talk about what I’ve done, I talk about the issues I’m focused on, and what I’m going to do,” Capuano said, mentioning his support for community health centers, the Fairmount commuter rail line through Dorchester, Mattapan, and Hyde Park, and the Green Line extension in Somerville. “That, to me, is what people want to hear.”

Pressley has a different viewpoint.

Ultimately, she said, the contest is about what kind of representative voters want. She acknowledged Capuano has a solid progressive “score card,” but promised “activist leadership” that “elevates all the voices in our district.”“How many of you have ever been invited to testify before Congress?” she asked her supporters in the pews. No hands went up. “I’m going to change that.”

Testifying before congress does little to nothing. Capuano would be the first to tell you that.

“There is a lot of talk that goes nowhere inside the halls of congress,” Capuano said.
“I know. I’ve been there 20 years and endured it, And fought for my constituents who all know who I am and what I stand for and what I am about,” he told the Leader Herald.
He said the voters in the Seventh Congressional District weren’t buying Pressley’s belief that the race is about race and gender.
“ I am focused. I know what to do,” said Capuano.

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