Comrade Neftali, who has written for this blog before, wrote a piece On Elections for the Signalfire blog last year as the U.S. Presidential elections approached. We are re-posting the last section here, as it becomes highly relevant in the light of the Supreme Court of the USA‘s nefarious gutting of one of the last remaining legal protections for non-white citizens left in the USA – that is, one of the last remaining victories of the Civil Rights movement.
On Electoral Suppression, the National Question, and the Sunbelt
Within the united states the bourgeois electoral system is fundamentally different than those of the parliamentary order, the US system grounds the body politic under a stronger regime of the leadership of capital and provides for greater stability for capital in carrying forward the economic intercourse of a free market society. Moreover this regime unites with white reactionary petty bourgeois class forces in, historically and into today, in disenfranchising citizens (particularly African-American and Latino voters). This occurs in many swing states and particularly through the sunbelt and rust-belt through gerrymandering or voter suppression. It is of course long part of the history of white supremacist rule and the continuation of national oppression and it can’t fundamentally be ignored.
Communists must fight for the political rights of the oppressed and expose the character of the state at work, why it must continually imprison those people in oppressed nationality communities and internal colonies. However such terrain is of course at issue because fundamentally the work of the Left here in many respects can be ultimately rerouted under the liberal bourgeoisie. Ultimately many left opportunists ignore these political questions precisely because the very matter draws them from their philistine posturing into the concrete of one of the many manifestations of national oppression as it is conducted in the United States.
Where voter suppression does exist, Communists must fight it. It should even tactically unite with those forces fighting against such repressive measures by those sections of capital working to bring this forward, it’s political representatives in the Republican Party, and the reactionary mass of the white petty bourgeoisie who are ultimately their auxiliary at work. We must strive to do so however independently from that work which seeks to simply draw voters quite straight away into the hands of the liberal bourgeoisie and the Democratic Party and again at each moment exposé the whole of the state, it’s history, and the ultimate traitorous nature of the Democrats including Barack Obama.
These principles of work must inform the general work of communists throughout the Sunbelt, and generally we must draw that strategy together which ultimately must figure tactical relations to those in the Democratic Party (especially the national bourgeoisie) that can enable us to build proletarian organization with real power to eventually oppose all sections of the bourgeoisie. Again here inside-outside as tactics not as strategy, though we must have a strategic evaluation of winning over sections of the African-American and national bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie.
It is however apparent that such a strategy can’t be a tailing of the national bourgeoisie, even in its most radical of sections. Communists must insist on being the vanguard of the whole of the proletariat and programatically deal in concrete detail with those possible oscillating class forces that can be won to revolution, that can be won over if we acknowledge the reality of democratic struggle of these forces for integration or self-determination. Where those forces exist and struggle in the terrain of the state for municipal power, to develop the productive forces of their communities, we lend the tentative support that’s always conditioned by our Communist program that sees how one must divide into two, how things turn into their opposites, and how the masses of people ultimately need liberation.