Freedom Socialist editorial — Send a socialist to city hall

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Socialist Alternative (SA) is shaking things up this election season with city council candidates in Boston, Minneapolis, and Seattle. In Seattle, the local Freedom Socialist Party (FSP) unanimously endorsed SA representative Kshama Sawant. The branch also invited Sawant to speak at an FSP-sponsored forum on a panel discussing the future of the labor movement.

Much of Sawant’s platform will sound familiar to supporters of FSP campaigns. She calls for a $15 minimum wage and for taxing corporations and the rich to provide things like affordable housing and expanded mass transit. She would fight for rent control, putting the brakes on new coal train traffic, and creating an elected civilian review board with real authority over Seattle police.

FSP would like to see Sawant address more feminist issues and call for public ownership of utilities and major industries under workers’ control, but her platform is excellent overall. And SA is running a vigorous anti-capitalist campaign against the city’s Democratic machine.

By taking up Sawant’s cause, FSP frankly hopes to encourage other socialist groups (including SA) to follow its example. As one Seattle forum participant pointed out, left organizations talk constantly about the crying need for solidarity and cooperation among different workers. It’s time we started practicing what we preach.

For more information on Kshama Sawant’s candidacy, visit www.votesawant.org.

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