Cori Bush, Missouri’s First Black Congresswoman, Has Black Lives Matter as Top Agenda Item

Cori Bush, Missouri’s First Black Congresswoman, Has Black Lives Matter as Top Agenda Item
Congresswoman-elect Cori Bush speaks during her election-night watch party at campaign headquarters in St. Louis, Mo., on Nov. 3, 2020. (Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)
Masooma Haq
11/4/2020
Updated:
1/23/2021

A Black Lives Matter activist won the House race in Missouri’s 1st Congressional District, sweeping in the votes on election night to become the state’s first black congresswoman.

After her big win, Cori Bush wrote: “Mike Brown was murdered 2,278 days ago. We took to the streets for more than 400 days in protest. Today, we take this fight for black lives from the streets of Ferguson to the halls of Congress. We will get justice.”

On Tuesday night she posted a photo of herself under a painting of the first black woman to serve in Congress, Shirley Chisholm.

Bush, who considers herself a part of “The Squad,” will likely become its newest member after receiving close to 80 percent of the vote in the state’s 1st Congressional District.

Bush had the full support of the Justice Democrats who helped Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) beat incumbent Joe Crowley in 2018 as well as the Working Families Party (WFP), which also affiliated with Reps. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), and Ilhan Omar (D-Mo.).

Speaking on a panel at a WFP event in October Bush said people should not worry about defunding the police. “Instead of worrying about how we’re trying to fix the problem, fix the real problem, which is police are killing black and brown people with impunity in this country and doing it disproportionately, and we’re tired of it and we say no more,” she said.

She continued, “What we need is violence prevention programs that actually address what’s happening in our communities,” adding that communities need “job training, we need money for counseling, we need money for addiction services, we need money for COVID-19 testing, we need money for mental health services and better job training.”

WFP is a socialist organization that has backed all the members of “The Squad.” Many of the Democratic Party’s progressive members have also signed the organization’s so-called “Charter,” which is a document laying out much of their socialist agenda for health care and housing, and have endorsed Joe Biden for president.

WFP writes that Maurice Mitchell, its director, is a “nationally-recognized social movement strategist, a visionary leader in the Movement for Black Lives, and a community organizer for racial, social, and economic justice.”

Mitchell and WFP have said that the Biden/Harris win is “the door not the destination” to achieving their agenda. WFP was key to electing Bush in Missouri.

Bush first got involved with the Black Lives Matter movement in 2014 in Ferguson, when Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot and killed by a white police officer. In response to the killing, she began leading protests in her district. She has been actively involved in the recent protests surrounding the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.

Masooma Haq began reporting for The Epoch Times from Pakistan in 2008. She currently covers a variety of topics including U.S. government, culture, and entertainment.