LOWELL -- Democratic Congressional candidate Seth Moulton stressed the need for new leadership in Washington Wednesday, calling incumbent Rep. John Tierney one of the least effective Congressmen in the country.

"Congress is broken today. We've never had a less effective Congress in American history and we can't change that by sending the same people back again and again," Moulton said in an interview with The Sun's editorial board.

Moulton, an Iraq war veteran and newcomer to politics, said his top priority if elected would be to address veteran's issues, including reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs health care system that he himself uses.

"I've been saying for a long time that it's not adequate, it's failing our veterans and it needs serious reform," Moulton said.

He also stressed the importance of educational reform, so that students have the opportunity to attend college.

"A lot of kids in the sixth district don't have that opportunity because they go to a failing school, so even though Massachusetts has on average the best schools in the country, we have a lot of failing schools in this district and that ought to change," he said.

The sixth district includes Bedford, Billerica, Burlington, Tewksbury and Wilmington.