Black Lives Matter activist Cori Bush defeated longtime Rep. William Lacy Clay in Missouri’s Democratic primary election on Tuesday (Aug. 4). Bush was a leader in the protests that followed the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in 2014.
“They counted us out,” she said to supporters on Tuesday, per Associated Press. “They called me — I’m just the protester. I’m just the activist with no name, no title and no real money. That’s all they said that I was. But St. Louis showed up today.”
Bush, who is also a registered nurse and pastor, became involved in politics following Brown’s death and ran for the representative seat in 2018, losing to Clay. Her victory on Tuesday (Aug. 4) ends a political dynasty that has lasted over a half a century, as Clay was elected in 2000 and took the post over from his father, who held the position for 32 years.
“[The voters are] ready to turn the page on decades of failed leadership,” Bush’s spokesperson Keenan Korth said after her win, adding that district residents were “galvanized” about her campaign.
Bush will most likely to win a seat in Congress in the November election because her St. Louis district is heavily-Democratic. This time around, Associated Press noted that Bush had political backing from the Justice Democrats and Fight Corporate Monopolies PAC. She also campaigned for the presidential bid of Bernie Sanders, who congratulated her on Twitter.
“Congratulations to [Cori Bush] on her primary victory tonight!” the Vermont senator wrote. “She is a true progressive who stands with working people and will take on the corporate elite of this country when she gets to Congress.”
Bush has continued to lead anti-police brutality protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.
“She’s being buoyed by this movement, and the movement’s origin is in Ferguson,” Justice Democrats spokesman Waleed Shahid told AP.