Socialist Workers Party campaign statement

For a labor party based on the unions

May 22, 2023

The following is a statement by Alyson Kennedy, who was the SWP 2023 candidate for mayor in Fort Worth, Texas. She won 5.2% of the vote.

The 2024 presidential election is well on, with Democratic and Republican candidates throwing their hats in the ring, starting again with Joseph Biden and Donald Trump. How should working people respond? In 2020, union officials overwhelmingly backed Biden, and what did he do? On Dec. 2 he led a bipartisan Congress to cram a contract down the throats of 115,000 rail workers, who had voted against it, and barred them from striking.

The Democrats say “Trump” is the issue and have spent years in a no-holds barred effort to drive him out of politics. This has led to a dangerous assault against our constitutional freedoms — rights sorely needed by working people to fight against the relentless attacks of the bosses and their government.

Many workers vote for what they see as the lesser evil, whether it be a Republican or Democrat. A growing number have said none of them are worth anything and stayed home. From an early age it is drummed into our heads that you can’t fight City Hall, there is nothing we can do to change things. But it is possible to build a better future for ourselves and our children.

We see this today in the growing number of workers who say, “enough is enough” and use their unions to fight for better conditions. We see this in the struggle being waged by the residents of East Palestine, Ohio, and in Ukraine, where working people are fighting to preserve their country’s independence and defend their rights and their unions at the same time.

We can break with the capitalist rulers’ two-party shell game and organize our own party, a labor party based on the unions. No one will do it for us. We can begin by discussing this with fellow workers and in the unions. Why should labor try to find a “lesser evil” election after election from the Democrats and Republicans? They’re parties that we know will defend the interests of the ruling families who are responsible for today’s social, moral and economic crisis.

A labor party can speak and act in the interests of the working-class, working farmers and the oppressed in cities and rural areas. It would tell the truth — that all political questions, from how the bosses run the factories and economy to their predatory foreign policy, are class questions — and chart a working-class road forward.

The Socialist Workers Party candidates campaign for the labor movement to make a complete break with the two-party system of big business. A labor party, based on the unions, would fight for workers and farmers to take political power into our own hands. To take control of constructing a better future for toilers worldwide. This is a future worth fighting for.