Missouri's first Black congresswoman continues to set the gold standard for politicians when it comes to backing up her words with actions.
We knew Missouri's U.S. Rep. Cori Bush was a fearless voice for the people when we put her on our list last year based on her work in Ferguson after Michael Brown was killed by police in 2014. That hasn't changed since she was elected as the first Black woman to represent Missouri in Congress. Bush didn't waste time or words when she spoke during the House debate on the impeachment of Donald Trump after the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, calling him the "white supremacist in chief" and saying he needed to be removed from office—regardless of potential backlash. Then came the moment when she and fellow Reps. Ilhan Omar and Ayanna Pressley slept outside the Capitol building to protest the expiration of the country's pandemic eviction moratorium. While President Joe Biden kept saying his hands were tied, Bush went to bat for the people who needed help the most. The attention the protest garnered led to an extension of the moratorium. After Texas' abortion ban took affect, Bush revealed during a congressional hearing on reproductive rights her own personal, traumatic story of abortion after she was raped at 18. "To all the Black women and girls who have had abortions or will have abortions, we have nothing to be ashamed of. We live in a society that has failed to legislate love and justice for us. But we deserve better. We demand better. We are worthy of better," the Missouri congresswoman said. Bush isn't just out here saying what people want her to say. She's putting in the work, too.