HBCU (Historically Black Colleges & Universities) graduate, Harris-Stowe State University alumna, Ferguson activist, single mother, former nurse and pastor, Cori Bush defeated 20-year incumbent Missouri Rep. William Lacy Clay in a Democratic primary on Tuesday night.

The US House seat, based in St. Louis, has been held by Clay and his father, former Rep. William Clay Sr., one of the founders of the Congressional Black Caucus, since 1969. Bush, who challenged Clay in 2018 and lost, was the first candidate launched by Justice Democrats, the progressive group dedicated to toppling moderate Democratic congressional incumbents. Bush captured nearly 49 percent of the vote by late Tuesday evening compared with 45.5 percent for Mr. Clay, according to The Associated Press.

According to Heavy; Bush attended Harris-Stowe State University from 1995-1996 and then Luthern School of Nursing from 2005-2008. She currently works at Hopewell Health Center Incorporated where she helps patients with mental health problems, but before that, she taught early childhood education. 

On Cori’s Website she explained why she ran for office.

This is a time in our history when complacency cannot be the standard. Americans today must decide between medication and rent. Our justice system over-incarcerates and our education system under-educates, while millions of children live in poverty and thousands live in cages. I am running because our district deserves a purpose-driven leader with a proven track record of fighting for the people, even when it threatens my own life. I am running because I have seen that change can happen across this nation when regular people stand up fearlessly against an unjust system.

Bush’s victory will send another round of shockwaves through the Democratic caucus on Capitol Hill, where leadership has fought to stave off a new generation of combative progressives, who support “Medicare for All,” the Green New Deal and other economic and racial justice policies dismissed for decades by the party establishment.