Essex native joins Vt. congressional race

Published: Mar. 15, 2022 at 5:42 PM EDT
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - Another Democratic candidate is launching a bid for Vermont’s lone Congressional seat.

Sianay Chase Clifford says she wants to represent Vermont in Congress so she can fight for working families with progressive policies. “We need people who, in the face of hard decisions, will choose working families no matter what,” she said.

Chase Clifford says she is shaped by her family’s story. Her parents fled Liberia in the late ‘80s during the country’s civil war. She was raised in Essex and became a social worker after receiving bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Boston College. She then worked for U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass. on Capitol Hill. She has also worked as an aide in the offices of HUD Secretary Julián Castro and Governor Deval Patrick, D-Mass. If elected, she would become the first Black woman elected to statewide office.

The Progressive is running as a Democrat for the seat being vacated by Congressman Peter Welch, who is seeking to replace Senator Patrick Leahy. Chase Clifford says she would push for Medicare for all, a Green New Deal, and changes to the federal Farm Bill.

Reporter Calvin Cutler: I’d imagine some might say you don’t have the experience or have built up the political capital for higher office. How do you respond to that?

Sianay Chase Clifford: I think rethinking how we think about experience and what we think about representation and I think about this political capital idea may be privileging people who have real conviction in their values over those who may want to play political gamesmanship.

Chase Clifford faces a crowded field for the Democratic nomination including Lt. Governor Molly Gray, D-Vt., Senator Kesha Ram Hinsdale, D-Vt., and Senate President Pro Tem Becca Balint, D-Windham County.

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