Democratic party

Scott Marshall scott at
Sun Jan 2 18:50:18 PST 2000

Doug said:

<Scott, since we've got you here, I'd be very interested in hearing you talk about the CPUSA's attitude towards the Democratic Party. I read the People's Weekly World pretty regularly, and I see a recurrent apology for the Dems - one not unlike that of elite liberals who play on fears of the fascist hordes hiding in the Republican Party. So while the PWW doesn't exactly say, "Vote Democratic!" it does repeatedly say "Vote against Republicans." And in this two-party state we live in that effectively means "Vote Democratic!," since I don't see the PWW urging people to vote Green (and since there aren't too many CP candidates on ballots anywhere). So what are you guys up to? Doug>

Scott replied:

Big topic. We have argued for a "lesser evil" electoral policy lately in specific instances. For example I don't think anyone can argue that the working class is better off with Guliani than they were with Denkins and I know all about Denkins piss poor record.

We've also run our own candidates and have two open CPUSAers elected to office as communists and several more elected as known communists who ran as independents and one on a democratic party slate. These are all for city council level positions.

As to the Greens, the Labor Party, the New Party, etc - our folks are active in all of these formations where they can be. We fully support the emergence of a mass based, labor-led, third party - but it's a ways from here to there. Key is building political independence in the labor movement. Unfortunately too many third party formations take a pass or refuse to engage with labor that is still stuck in the Dems. For us this is classic childish leftism. But we never-the-less still try and work and influence in these groups.

Just tactically, we never endorse *any* other party's candidates. But for example, here in Chicago we were all out for Harold Washington and a significant part of his political apparatus - though he was a Democrat.

And it is true that in the last period we have seen the main thing as defeating the Gingrichite ultra right wing of the Republican party. I know others don't agree with us but we do see a fascist danger in these guys. The merger mania, the globalization of capital, etc, in our opinion does have within it the seeds of a much greater anti-democratic, anti-working class and racist danger that is qualitative, not just more of the same old shit.

We've been called a lot of things, but liberal elites....grin. I think I know who you mean, but what has always turned me off to the "elite" label is: it seems to me to have come from folks like Rush Limbaugh, or to be more precise - they are the ones who popularize it. Kinda like the whole "political correct" thing was used to bash the left. I'm certainly not at war with liberals or social democrats or do-gooders, though I might disagree with them profoundly. I sure didn't mind all them liberal elites in Seattle, though again I don't agree with a whole lot of their bullshit.


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