The strong candidacy of Michelle Wu for mayor of Boston

The strong candidacy of Michelle Wu for mayor of Boston

By Jennie L. Ilustre

Councilor Michelle Wu has taken a giant step forward in becoming the next mayor of Boston, Massachusetts, with a strong performance in the recent primary.

Wu was the top voter in the Boston mayor’s primary, winning 33 percent of the vote. She beat four other candidates for the first place. Annissa Essaibi George, an extraordinary member of the Boston City Council, obtained the second highest vote with 22%. The two will face each other in the legislative elections on November 2.

“This is a choice for our future,” remarked Councilor Wu, who has two young boys, according to an NBC Boston report. “It’s about choosing whether City Hall tackles our greatest challenges with bold solutions or whether we nibble at the edges of the status quo.”

Wu made history as the first Asian American female board member when she was elected in 2013 at the age of 28. Three years later, her colleagues unanimously elected her president of the Boston City Council. She was the first woman of color to hold the office of President of the Council.

Councilor Wu exuded confidence that her campaign would win in November. She added that she would work harder for Boston and asked for continued support to achieve this goal.

Wu’s Chances of Winning

Paul W. Lee, former president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and former chairman of the board of directors of the Asian American Justice Center (AAJC), currently lives in the Boston area.

He said in an email interview: “Michelle leads the first polls, but her supporters know they will have to keep working hard and raising money to secure her victory in November.”

“Some commentators have characterized the upcoming election as a choice between his vision of a new Boston with bold and visionary solutions and the status quo approach of his opponent’s old Boston,” he said. “Having said that, there appears to be strong opposition from the big donors associated with Trump.”

  1. B. Woo is president and “22 year volunteer” of the 80-20 Educational Foundation, Inc., a 501 C-3 organization. He thinks Wu will win the legislative elections in November: “His campaign looks exceptionally strong. My guess is that she will get at least 55% of the vote on November 2.

But he also noted in a recent newsletter: “A billionaire backed Annissa Essaibi with a SuperPAC and aired $ 5 million worth of TV commercials for her during the primary… During the general election, a lot more money could be paid, and the TV commercials will likely be negative commercials attacking Michelle Wu.

Woo, Lieutenant Governor of Delaware in 1985-89, urged Asian Americans to “help Michelle by giving generously” to the 80-20 Educational Foundation, Inc.

Historic election

Madalene Xuan-Trang Mielke, President and CEO of the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) noted in an email: headquarters. It would be the first time in 200 years that a woman of color has been elected mayor of Boston.

According to the NBC-TV report, Wu’s parents came to the United States from Taiwan in the early 1980s, before his birth. Wu is fluent in Mandarin and Spanish. George’s father immigrated to the United States from Tunisia in 1972, and his mother was born in a displaced persons camp in Germany after World War II.

The election to elect Boston’s next mayor will take place on November 2 of this year. The winner will succeed Marty Walsh. Walsh resigned as mayor on March 22, 2021, Wiki noted, when he was confirmed as the US Secretary of Labor in the Biden administration.

Due to the vacancy in the post, he added, the winner will be sworn in as soon as possible once the general election results are certified.

Large Coalition

Former NAPABA President and AJC Board Chairman Lee hailed Councilor Wu’s strong performance in the September 14 primary as well-deserved.

He noted: “Michelle won a major victory in the preliminary elections with over 33% of the vote in a five-person race, a margin of over 10% over her closest opponent. She won or tied in 124 of 255 ridings and came second in 72 other ridings.

He added: “This reflects the broad grassroots coalition she has built across Boston with her bold and visionary work in many critical areas such as affordable housing, anti-displacement, economic development and contracting. fair for minority-owned businesses. “

“Michelle has a strong reputation based on her eight years on city council, where she sponsored or co-sponsored the majority of legislation during her tenure,” Lee said.

“Those who have worked with her know that she is an extremely intelligent, talented and charismatic leader, able to mobilize broad coalitions,” he added. “She has been supported by a number of black and Latin leaders – she is fluent in Spanish – as well as by various unions and progressive organizations.”


APAICS President and CEO Mielke said: “The Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies recently awarded Michelle the 2021 Women’s Collective Spotlight Award in recognition of her work as president of the city council. from Boston. We extend our congratulations to City Councilor Wu for becoming the top voter in votes in the Boston Mayor’s Primary. “

Former NAPABA President and AJC Board Chair Lee said Councilor Wu “has achieved results, such as her advocacy for free bus rides through the most difficult neighborhoods. poorer city, a program that has been replicated in other cities across the state.

“As a mother of two young boys aged 3 and 6, her lived experience has informed her work with young families in the areas of child care and early childhood education, mental health and child care. ‘education,’ he stressed. “Michelle was the first woman of color to be elected president of Boston City Council, and she worked to ensure that two women of color succeed her.”

Inspiring story

City Councilor Wu is a candidate with an inspiring story as a person who has succeeded against all odds. On her website, she talks about the challenges in her life, her job, and her vision to help others.

“Growing up, I never thought I would run for office one day. As the daughter of immigrants, I understood from an early age how my family and so many others feel invisible and inaudible in our society. When my mom started struggling with mental illness when I was finishing school, I became her caregiver and raised my sisters. Back then, as we tried to figure out how to continue in the depths of family crisis, we felt like we were alone, invisible and helpless.

“Through my family’s struggles, I have seen how much government matters and how often there is a great disconnect when you need help the most. Whether it’s fighting to get my sisters to get what they need in schools, fighting to open a small neighborhood business, or navigating BPS with my own kids, we’ve encountered obstacles from the agencies. of the city who were supposed to provide support. And when I met others in the same situation –

caring for a family member, raising kids, trying to start a business I’ve heard the same frustrations of struggling with a system that wasn’t designed to work for everyone.

“I went to law school to learn how to navigate and change these systems so other families weren’t facing the same challenges. And while working at City Hall for Mayor Tom Menino and during the first campaign of my former law professor, Senator Elizabeth Warren, I saw how government and politics can help solve problems, to remove barriers and empower people. That’s why I ran for city council in 2013 and why I work every day to build a community and promote the future our children deserve.

“On City Council, I worked as a coalition to get results to transform what is possible when we think big. I have worked to expand the ranks of women, people of color and youth in leadership positions. I have stood alongside activists, advocates and community members to lead the nation by offering paid parental leave, tackling the climate crisis, changing the conversation about transportation, opposing interests companies like Airbnb and eradicating corruption in our bureaucracies. I know Boston can be a welcoming city where we can all thrive – and there is so much more to do together.

“This work is deeply personal to me. As a mom to Blaise and Cass, I feel every day the urgency of families fighting against the system to get along and build healthy, safe and resilient communities. Now is the time for us to lead.


Here is Councilor Wu’s official profile on the Boston Council website.

Michelle Wu has been a voice for accessibility, transparency and community engagement in city leadership. First elected to Boston City Council in November 2013 at the age of 28, Wu is the first Asian American woman to sit on the council.

Councilor Wu was the main sponsor of the Paid Parental Leave Ordinance and the Health Care Equity Ordinance prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity – both adopted unanimously by the Council and enacted by former Mayor Martin J. Walsh. She is also the author of the Boston Communications Access Ordinance, which guarantees translation, interpretation and assistive technology for access to city services, regardless of proficiency in l English or a communication disability.

Wu made her Town Hall debut working for Mayor Thomas M. Menino as a Rappaport Fellow in Law and Public Policy, where she created the city’s first guide to the restaurant licensing process in the start to finish, and was also a driving force in launching Boston’s food truck program. She then served as a statewide constituency director during her former law professor Elizabeth Warren’s campaign for the US Senate.

As a former restaurant owner, legal services attorney and legal guardian to her younger sister, Wu understands first-hand the barriers families and communities face. She has a background in community advocacy, having worked at the WilmerHale Legal Services Center in Jamaica Plain, providing legal advice to low-income small business owners, as well as the Boston Medical Center’s Medical-Legal Partnership on legal matters. immigration for survivors. domestic violence.

In 2016, Councilor Wu was honored as one of Ten Outstanding Young Leaders by the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and as part of Marie Claire Magazine’s New Guard: America’s 50 Most Powerful Women.

Michelle Wu is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. She is fluent in Mandarin and Spanish and lives in Roslindale with her husband Conor and sons Blaise and Cass.



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