The Militant (logo)  

Vol. 75/No. 27      July 25, 2011

Support an independent
working-class campaign!
(front page/editorial)

We urge working people in New York’s 9th Congressional District, as well as others everywhere, to support the Socialist Workers Party campaign of Christopher Hoeppner in the September 13 special election for that vacant seat.

By mobilizing to get on the ballot, the socialists put a spotlight on the outrageously undemocratic way the election was called. Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo announced the election late Friday afternoon of the July 4th weekend. To maximize chances no one but the hand-picked Democratic and Republican nominees could get on the ballot—including any working-class candidate running independent of and against the two bosses’ parties—Cuomo set a July 13 deadline to collect 3,500 signatures on nominating petitions. In New York the Democrats and Republicans, as well as several small parties that back them, already have ballot status and don’t have to meet this onerous requirement.

But the stakes for working people involve more than Cuomo’s bourgeois electoral maneuver, an age-old phenomenon. This is democracy—bourgeois democracy—in times of mounting capitalist crisis.

It’s another example of obstacles being thrown in the way of workers’ ability to speak out, organize, and act in our class interests as the U.S. capitalist rulers step up their assault on our living and job conditions and launch new wars. Just like their moves to erode the presumption of innocence and give the FBI and CIA wider and wider latitude to spy on workers and disrupt our organizations.

Taking on Cuomo’s challenge, supporters of the SWP campaign in New York collected 7,080 signatures in five days. From the start, SWP campaign supporters have reached out to other workers standing up for their rights. In just the first week of the race Hoeppner walked the picket line of striking building workers in Queens and accepted an invitation to speak to a group of students fighting for legalization of immigrants. In two weeks campaign supporters will join others in Germantown, Maryland, to support a woman’s right to choose abortion and defend a clinic there.

The SWP campaign is the only voice in the September 13 election calling for workers to break with the two parties of U.S. imperialism, the Democrats and Republicans, and build a revolutionary movement that can overturn the capitalist state and replace it with political rule by workers and farmers—the necessary instrument for working people to fight to end once and for all the scourges of war, racism, women’s oppression, and class exploitation.

Although claiming to speak for working people, the so-called Working Families Party in New York has endorsed Democratic Party candidate David Weprin, a lawyer and investment banker. The Independence Party, which in New York City is dominated by a middle-class cult claiming to speak on behalf of the oppressed (for many years called the New Alliance Party), also backs Weprin. The Conservative Party has endorsed Republican Robert Turner, a retired cable TV mogul.

Help get out the word about the working-class alternative! Volunteer to help the Socialist Workers Party campaign. Invite Hoeppner to speak to your organization, union, neighborhood group, or school. Call (212) 736-2540 or write or stop by the campaign headquarters at 306 W. 37th St., 10th Floor, New York, NY 10018.
Related articles:
Socialists file for N.Y. ballot spot
Socialist Workers Party joins fighters on picket lines, in the streets
‘We face same problems workers face worldwide’
Queens, Brooklyn workers help get socialist on ballot  
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