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Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu Announces Run For Mayor05:46
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Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu, in a 2016 file photo (Elise Amendola/AP)
Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu, in a 2016 file photo (Elise Amendola/AP)

Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu will run for mayor in 2021. Wu announced her candidacy Tuesday morning with a video in three languages that zeroed in on issues including public health, housing and transportation.

“Now is the time for change,” Wu said at the end of the video.

In the video, Wu portrayed Boston as a city that has ignored the needs of marginalized communities, and said she's the one to right those wrongs.

“I’m a mom, a daughter of immigrants, and I’ve lived my whole life knowing what it’s like to feel unseen and unheard, even when you most need help,” she said in the video.

Wu has served on the city council for seven years, including a term as president.

"Many of us knew that when Michelle Wu made her strategic move to become City Council president, that that would be really her teeing up a run for mayor,” said Michael Curry, former president of the Boston chapter of the NAACP. "[If not] for Mayor Walsh having pretty strong popularity throughout the city of Boston, I believe Michelle would have run sooner.”

It's unclear whether Walsh plans to run a third time, Curry said. As the incumbent and a veteran campaigner, he'd be a tough opponent — even for Wu, one of the most popular city councilors.

"I think he'll have a great story to tell about some significant development in the city, around some work in the last several years on the racial justice front … and then moving some resources in the direction of identifying how to address those issues,” he said.

Curry said anything is on the table in a campaign, and Wu could use Walsh’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic as ammunition against him.

Now Curry said he's waiting to see who else jumps in the race for mayor of Boston — particularly Black women — citing Wu's colleague on the council, Andrea Campbell, as a possible contender.

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Simón Ríos is an award-winning bilingual reporter in WBUR's newsroom.

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