2017
Description: 
Whether to participate in elections – local or national – is a question that many on the U.S. left are examining today, especially after the Sanders campaign. Although this is not a new question, it is one that is far from resolved. As a consequence, we see socialist and communist groups supporting or running candidates in a wide range of political formations – the Democratic Party, the Green Party, Working Families Party, as independents, and as candidates identified with their own organizations. The electoral activity of revolutionaries doesn’t have to be shaped by the existing political parties. We don’t need to challenge the capitalists on their terms or strive to get elected. We can use these periods of increased political interest and discussion to have working class candidates stand for the independent, self-activity of the working class, and not be bound by elections. In the U.S. there have been some attempts along these lines. In the recent elections in France, the candidates of The NPA (New Anti-Capitalist Party) and Lutte Ouvriere (Workers Struggle) presented working class candidates that represented this perspective. Antoine Perrin, a militant associated with L’Etincelle (The Spark), a grouping in the NPA, will discuss the recent French elections. And activists of Revolutionary Workers Group will talk about the experience in the U.S. past and present and the possibilities for revolutionary electoral activity in the U.S. today.