CNN has not yet projected the race.
“From every corner of our city, Boston has spoken. We are ready to face this moment. We are ready to become a Boston for all,” Wu told a crowd of supporters Tuesday night. “I want to be clear, it was not my vision on the ballot, it was ours together.”
City Councilwoman Annissa Essaibi George admitted Boston’s mayoral race with a large proportion of the votes still waiting to be counted.
“I would like to say a big congratulations to Michelle Wu,” Essaibi George told a crowd of supporters at her election night party. “She is the first woman and first Asian American to be elected mayor of Boston.”
Wu is to succeed incumbent Mayor Kim Janey, Boston’s first black and female mayor. Janey, then city council chairman, was the next in line to lead the city when Boston Mayor Marty Walsh was named president Joe Biden’s Labor secretary in January.
In the weeks leading up to the election, opinion polls consistently showed that Wu had a clear lead over Essaibi George, also a colored woman.
From the beginning, this election was a remarkable departure from the history of Boston. Undisputed mayoral races, where there are no established candidates seeking re-election, are hard to find in Boston and often draw crowded primary elections in the Democratic-heavy city. And in this year’s non-affiliated primary, every serious candidate was a colored person, and most of them were women.
Wu fought for distinctive policies like a Green New Deal for Boston and received support from high-profile Massachusetts progressives, such as the rep. Ayanna Pressley, Sens. Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren. Pressley, who represents part of Boston, also served on the Boston City Council with both Wu and Essaibi George.
Wu ran on a progressive platform, including calling for a toll-free transit system.
While both candidates locked in support from many of Boston’s powerful unions, Essaibi George proclaimed the support of a number of local unions such as the Boston Firefighters, Boston EMS, electricians, steelworkers, the Massachusetts Nurses Association and more.
Wu’s support included 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East and Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority unions.
Yet much of Wu’s support came from more progressive organizations, such as the Working Families Party, the Sunrise Movement Boston, the local branch of the National Youth-Leading Climate Group, and Planned Parenthood Massachusetts.
While both candidates tried to distance themselves from the well-known progressive vs. moderate divisions in the Democratic Party, external sources added some pressure. Before election day, a pro-Essaibi George super PAC ran an ad claiming that Wu wanted to “defuse the police.” The Wu campaign called it “dishonest and desperate.”