Democrat Michelle Wu made history on Tuesday night when she was elected Boston's new mayor. Wu is the first woman and the first person of color to hold the seat in the city's history.
Boston has historically only elected White men as mayor, and typically elects mayors who have lifelong Boston roots, CBS Boston reports, but Wu has broken both of those traditions with her win. Along with being the daughter of Taiwanese immigrants, Wu grew up in Chicago and didn't move to Boston until she attended Harvard University and Harvard Law School.
"I came to this city as a homesick college kid," Wu said in her victory speech on Tuesday night. "But as soon as I stepped foot on the red line to Chinatown, tea token in hand, I knew I was home. Thank you, Boston."
Wu, a mother of two boys, jokingly told her supporters, "One of my sons asked me the other night if sons can be elected mayor of Boston."
"They have been, and they will someday again, but not tonight. On this day, Boston elected your mom because from every corner of our city, Boston has spoken. We are ready to meet this moment. We are ready to become a Boston for everyone. We are ready to become a Boston that doesn't push people out, but welcomes all who call our city home," Wu said.
"I want to be clear — it wasn't my vision on the ballot. It was ours, together," she added. "...Although we've put in a lot of work to get to this day, our movement does not end here. We have a lot of work to do, so let's dig in."
Boston City Councilor Annissa Essaibi George, also a Democrat, conceded to Wu soon after the polls closed, at around 10:15 p.m. on Tuesday. At the time just 30% of precincts had reported their results, but all of them had reported results in favor of Wu, at 64% to 36%, according to CBS Boston.
Essaibi George, who is also the daughter of immigrant parents — her father is from Tunisia and her mother was born in a displaced person's camp in Germany — congratulated Wu on her victory and recognized Wu's historic achievement.
"She is the first woman, the first person of color, and as an Asian American, the first to be elected mayor of Boston," Essaibi George said. "I know this is no small feat, you know this is no small feat. I want her to show this city how mothers get it done."
Wu's first day in office will be November 16, CBS Boston reports. Throughout her campaign, she focused on issues such as housing affordability, education equity, closing the racial wealth gap and improving transportation. She has also proposed a city-level Green New Deal agenda to tackle the climate crisis.
Tuesday's victory is not Wu's first historic achievement. Wu became the first Asian American woman to serve on the city council when she was elected in November 2013. In January 2016, she became the first woman of color to serve as council president.
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