[Marxism] Question re Latinos sank the Republicans in the mid-term elections

David McDonald dbmcdonald at comcast.net
Wed Nov 8 10:09:57 MST 2006

>What will you do then, advocate to vote for the Republicans?:-)Gilles

What we should do is figure out a way to capitalize on the overwhelming
sentiment expressed by the voters against the war. The professional dems,
etc. will want to give the new Congress breathing room but real people want
the war over and feel they have already made that point.

We need new national mobilizations that rope in all of the above and create
a broader unity than we have been capable of for years. The current
situation  is what Halstead called an "opening to the right."

This is not the time to nitpick over withdrawal scenarios, trying to find a
way to distinguish ourselves to maintain ideological purity. I would not,
for instance, allow the fact of any given politician's adopting the call for
re-deployment to automatically make him/her ineligible to speak at a rally
on the grounds of insufficient anti-imperialism. The US is not going to be
able to maintain a huge force in the Middle East for the simple reason that
the soldiers themselves will not stand for it. (The main reason troops give
for sticking it out in Iraq is to keep their buddies safe. With that
immediate necessity gone, for instance if they were stationed in the middle
of the Kuwaiti desert, unit cohesion would dissolve overnight into a new
bring the troops home movement.)

Someone can probably be relied upon to call a national action that will
exclude by its demands everyone to their right, which includes almost the
whole world. We should guard against this inevitable knee-jerk sectarian
reaction, wherever it comes from, by working to create actions that include
as many of the people who think they just voted the war out of existence as

A good place to start might be approaches to local affiliates of UfPJ to
propose broad coalition efforts for the March 17th fourth anniversary of the
war demonstrations. Most of the country can't get to Washington DC. People
in DC and cities close enough to go to DC might figure out how to open up
the existing UfPJ operations. What would be a political basis to reach out
to the Hispanic population, which has just decisively rejected the general
onslaught on immigrant rights?

As it happened, for mostly local historical reasons, and also the good work
early on from NION in the Seattle immigrant rights movement, the Feb 15th
2003 demo in Seattle was jointly sloganed about the war in Iraq and the
attack on immigrant rights and included major components from immigrant
rights organizations. (It was their work in the immigrant rights movement
and the connections forged therein with some of the mainstream non-profits
that made NION's presence among the Feb 15th forces here unassailable,
although the whining reached an incredible pitch. It was an outstanding
example of flanking tactics by small and outside forces to leverage their
way to the table to forge a united front.) Maybe that could be one approach.
Or the beginning of a discussion.

David McDonald

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