By John Studer
The Socialist Workers Party ran candidates for public office around the country in the 2013 elections and used them to put forward an independent working-class voice, said Steve Clark, a member of the party’s National Committee, at a Militant Labor Forum here Nov. 8.
“But for class-conscious workers, these election campaigns are political detours on the road to independent working-class political action. The capitalist rulers use elections to camouflage class relations of exploitation and the class struggle.”
Speaking on the results of the 2013 mayoral election in New York and opportunities to build the party today, Clark introduced the candidates who stood for the SWP against the Democrats, Republicans and other capitalist parties — Dan Fein for mayor, John Studer for comptroller, Deborah Liatos for public advocate, and Sara Lobman, Róger Calero and Seth Galinsky for Borough presidents in Manhattan, Bronx and Queens.
The campaigns were a subordinate part of other party-building activities, Clark said. We used them to engage working people, whose lives and outlook have been shaken by the capitalist crisis, in a discussion of working-class politics, to focus attention toward the class struggle and away from the misconception — promoted by the capitalist rulers — that politics has to do with choosing among the politicians of the bosses’ twin parties, the Democrats and Republicans.
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The Militant is the official newspaper of the Socialist Workers Party.