Local News

Hayes declares victory in tight race for Congress

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Acclaimed educator Jahana Hayes will become the first black woman to represent Connecticut in Congress after winning the state’s open seat.

Hayes, a Democrat, defeated Republican Manny Santos, a former mayor of Meriden, to represent the state’s northwest corner.

The 2016 National Teacher of the Year only recently got involved in politics. She capitalized on her life story as a onetime teen mother who overcame poverty and rose to the height of her profession.

Hayes will succeed U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty. The Democrat chose not to seek re-election after being criticized for her slow handling of a sexual harassment case in her office. It involved her former chief of staff, who was not fired for several months following allegations he punched and threatened a female staffer.

On the campaign trail, Hayes called for strengthening the public education system and passing stronger federal gun safety laws.

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