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Vol. 81/No. 27      July 24, 2017

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Socialist Workers Party steps up campaigning across the country

Militant/Jacquie Henderson
Socialist Workers Party candidate for mayor of Minneapolis David Rosenfeld discusses need for working class to fight to take political power with Maria Flores on her doorstep.
The Socialist Workers Party is organizing to knock on doors and talk to workers in towns and cities large and small across the country, discussing the capitalist rulers’ deepening political and economic crisis and the fighting perspectives of the party. As the banner at the party’s recent conference put it, “Act on the rulers’ deepening political crisis” by taking the party and young socialists “deeper into the working class.”

As part of the discussion, SWP members and supporters will introduce workers to Are They Rich Because They’re Smart?; The Clintons’ Anti-Working-Class Record: Why Washington Fears Working People; and Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power, all three by SWP National Secretary Jack Barnes, as well as Is Socialist Revolution in the US Possible? by SWP leader Mary-Alice Waters. And they will expand the circulation of the Militant, the party’s paper.

David Rosenfeld, Socialist Workers Party candidate for mayor of Minneapolis, and party supporters campaigned in the community of Osseo, northwest of the city, July 1.

The SWP’s party-building campaigning gets a boost from its election campaigns, since most workers today still look to the elections as a place to effect change. In addition to Minneapolis, the party is running for mayor in Seattle, Miami, Atlanta, New York City and Albany, New York, and the Communist League in Canada is running for mayor in Montreal.

Janet Franco told Rosenfeld that she was glad to meet him when he knocked on her door. “I worked drawing blood in a hospital in Texas, but I only made $8 an hour,” she said. “I need to make more money here because everything we need is so expensive.”

“Workers carry the burden of the capitalist crisis,” replied Rosenfeld. “The 2016 election results signal coming battles by working people against the attacks of the bosses and their government — that’s why they fear working people. And it’s fueling an accelerating political crisis in both capitalist political parties, the Democrats and Republicans.”

She decided to get The Clintons’ Anti-Working-Class Record along with a subscription to the Militant.

“I think we need to organize together. We will never get anywhere if we are looking at each other as the problem, instead of at those who are making money from our work,” Maria Flores said when Rosenfeld introduced himself and the SWP. She asked that party members come back again the next day when she’d have some money so she could get the books and paper they showed her.

“Come sit down and talk,” Roy, a worker in a nearby metal fabrication plant, told Rosenfeld. After listening to him describe the roots of the political, social and economic crisis of capitalism today, Roy said, “I agree with a lot of what you’re saying. I don’t trust any of them, but I voted for Trump because he had some good ideas. But they’re not letting him do anything.”

“The anti-Trump witch hunt you see in the liberal media every day is being driven by the rulers’ fear and contempt for workers who voted for Trump,” Rosenfeld said. Roy invited the socialists to come back later and join him in eating the shish kebab he had cooking on the grill.

Rosenfeld got into a discussion with Ruben Cabrera, a young warehouse worker, about how workers and farmers made a revolution and took political power in Cuba. It is an example workers in the U.S. and elsewhere should emulate, Rosenfeld said. “I’d like to find out more about that,” Cabrera said, as he subscribed to the paper and got a copy of The Clintons’ Anti-Working-Class Record. Six workers picked up subscriptions that afternoon and four got books by party leaders.

Socialist workers have begun collecting the 750 signatures they need to go well over the filing requirement to put Rosenfeld on the Nov. 7 ballot as they continue to campaign throughout the city and beyond.

Party members in Albany are campaigning widely for SWP mayoral candidate Margaret Trowe. They’ve knocked on doors in Hoosick Falls, Watervliet and other towns where workers have been locked in strike battles and fights over the bosses’ poisoning the environment.

The Socialist Workers Party had hoped to put Trowe on the ballot, but concluded it wouldn’t be possible and that the attempt was interfering with party campaigning across the country. They are organizing with party members and young socialists in New York City and the region to continue to campaign intensively for the party.

They are building a campaign meeting in Albany for Saturday, July 22, that will feature Trowe and SWP New York mayoral candidate Osborne Hart.

In an interview with the Seattle Weekly, Mary Martin, SWP candidate for mayor of Seattle, explained how silver miners, members of the United Steelworkers union, are fighting concession demands from Hecla bosses in Mullan, Idaho. “What they’re asking for is their union protections of safety not to be violated by the company, because this is a dangerous industry,” she said. “We are going to need to build a movement capable of taking political power out of the hands of the capitalist class, and our party — the Socialist Workers Party — is at the core of that.”

Highlighted in bold type a break-out box in the article has Martin saying, “It’s going to take a socialist revolution like what was carried out in Cuba to reorganize society and end the racism and dog-eat-dog nature of capitalism once and for all.”

To get in touch with the SWP nearest you, check the directory on page 8.

Jacquie Henderson and Joe Kapsner in Minneapolis and Edwin Fruit in Seattle contributed to this article.
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Socialist Workers Party gets hearing at NOW conference
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