Socialism will win. And other October Dispatch news.

I’m here because I want to win. I bet you are too.

And when we have a cruel president who is above the law, like the kings of old, when the naked struggle for power becomes an open spectacle, we have to remind ourselves who ended the divine right of kings:

We, the people.

If Bernie Sanders can get out of the hospital and immediately renew his call for Medicare for All, if 50,000 General Motors workers can stay out on strike for three weeks and keep fighting stronger one day longer from Texas to Wisconsin, Nevada to Mississippi, if 35,000 parks workers, teachers and custodians from three different unions can unite to threaten a strike in Chicago, we can win.

Last month, our ecosocialists invited those striking United Auto Workers to join millions of young people demanding climate justice. This month we’re marching to close the immigrant concentration camps. The working class knows what’s what: teachers and Amazon and Walmart workers were the most frequent donors to Bernie Sanders’ $25.3 million campaign haul from July to September.

And we know we can’t rely on the courts to save us. The light sentence for Botham Jean’s killer is just the latest reminder. But when we unite across our differences of region, race, and who we love, when we stand together and keep fighting, you can see the path to victory. We did it at GM, when they tried cutting the health care of the striking workers. Boy, did they reverse that fast! And picket lines got stronger.

Politicians inside the beltway don’t lead unless they have movements at their backs, like our own members Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and AOC. But with them pushing on the inside, and us and our allies building solidarity, shutting down production and making demands on the outside, we can drown out the politics of fear and division. That’s when we win things like quality housing we can afford, clean water for our kids, and a secure retirement for all. That’s when we transform society to put people before profits.

And more than ever I know DSA has a critical role changing the conversation and building power in communities large and small across this nation. Two months ago we had the largest convention in our history, and this month will be the first face to face meeting of the new National Political Committee, elected at the convention.

These waters are uncharted, but I’m becoming ever more confident that socialism will win!

Maria

NATIONAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

MEET YOUR STAFF

Alec Ramsay-Smith, DSA for Bernie Campaign Manager

Hello! I’m Alec, your new Bernie IE Campaign Manager. I grew up in Michigan, where I got my start in electoral work on local and congressional campaigns in mostly rural areas around the state. I spent the last several years as an organizer for two of the country’s most militant and progressive unions, working on strikes, recruiting leaders, and organizing new workers into our union. Since a coworker brought me to my first DSA meeting and I accidentally signed on to help set up our mobilizer program, I have become a committed chapter leader in Chicago and Central Connecticut DSAs. I am pumped to work with all of you to get Bernie elected, and we are going to use this campaign to build multiracial working class power across the country. Send me your podcast recommendations for the long nights ahead!

NATIONAL POLITICAL COMMITTEE

The DSA NPC gathers October 12th-13th to discuss how to carry out mandates from the national convention and rise to the political moment with a strategic plan. DSA members as of 9/30/2019 can RSVP to a livestream of the meeting here. The Saturday session will be livestreamed beginning at 10AM ET/9AM CT/8AM MT/7AM PT and ending at 6PM ET/5PM CT/4PM MT/3PM PT. The Sunday session livestream begins at 10AM ET/9AM CT/8AM MT/7AM PT and ends at 3PM ET/2PM CT/1PM MT/12PM PT.

NATIONAL ELECTORAL COMMITTEE

Join our Phone Banking Training October 7th

We’re almost one month from the November 5th election day for most candidates, but we still have one more big primary left, for Marguerite Green for Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry, this October 12th (yes, on a Saturday)! Three Louisiana chapters are uniting in their first statewide electoral campaign for a vision of democratic socialism for our farmers. If Marguerite makes it past the primaries, she’ll join:

  • Chanan Suarez for Bellingham, WA City Council
  • Dean Preston for San Francisco, CA Board of Supervisors
  • Liliana Rivera Baiman for Columbus, OH City Council, and 
  • Shaun Scott for Seattle, WA City Council (for whom mail-in ballots will be dropping in October) in the general election.

We’re hoping to see chapters come together Captain Planet-style to phone bank and travel nearby to knock doors this October and November. Together, we can take these DSA get out the vote operations to the next level, building experience and relationships in the process. Phone banking is also a good skill to practice beyond elections, since you can phone bank members for check ins, dues drives, and big events. And of course no better way to learn from what a chapter is doing then to travel and work alongside them.

That is why we’re leading a phonk bank training, where we’ll go over how to phone bank and how to host a good phone bank on Monday, Oct 7th at 8:30pm ET / 5:30pm  PST! RSVP for the training or a recording of it here.

If you’re eager to get phone banking or start planning a chapter trip before that, especially with Marguerite’s primary coming up, just email eric@dsausa.org to get set up.

MEDICARE FOR ALL

The Medicare for All campaign is proud to stand in solidarity with striking GM workers! On Sept. 23, the campaign encouraged DSA members to join members of the United Auto Workers at the picket line in the fight for better wages, job security and health benefits. Healthcare was a key reason for the strike, and GM retaliated by cutting off access to striking workers’ health insurance entirely. Medicare for All supporters and DSA chapters across the nation — from San Francisco to Portland to Philly — held solidarity strikes for their brothers and sisters on the picket line. We stand with you!

We’re still encouraging DSA members to send letters to your congressional representatives to ensure the House Medicare for All caucus stays true to our 5 principles. The House Pressure guide has everything you need to help you and your chapter get started, including how to set up a meeting with your rep, how to put pressure on them if they aren’t yet M4A supporters, how to connect M4A work to a Bernie 2020 canvass, and how to build a local coalition to keep the Medicare for All movement strong in your area. See the guide here.

The best way to keep in touch with the campaign is to sign up for our monthly newsletter here.

DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST LABOR COMMISSION

The UAW strike is still going strong. And you can help! Here are some support suggestions from our DSA Democratic Socialist Labor Commission:

NATIONAL WEEKEND OF ACTION TO #CLOSETHECAMPS 

From the day he took office, Donald Trump escalated a failed and cruel immigration policy into an all-out war against immigrants, banning Muslims, slamming the door on refugees, and tearing children from their parents’ arms.

In this context, DSA has endorsed a national weekend of action to #ClosetheCamps on Indigenous People’s Day weekend, Oct 11-14. Our national Immigrant Rights Working Group has helped initiate and lead this action, in partnership with other organizations (including the Coalition to Close the Concentration Camps and the indigenous socialist group The Red Nation). Right now, DSAers as far apart as Texas, California, Minnesota, and Georgia are organizing actions.

There’s still time for your chapter to participate! You can find guidelines on the website. And the DSA Immigrant Rights Working Group is happy to help you figure out how to begin building your coalition, choosing a strategic target, and organizing your action. These actions are a step toward ongoing campaigns for immigrant rights that will build the base for larger national actions.

Contact the DSA national immigrant rights working group at dsa.immigration@gmail.com for more information or to get plugged in to the working group.

ARE YOU REGISTERED TO VOTE?

The Brennan Center for Justice released a study showing that 17 million Americans were dropped from voter rolls between 2016 and 2018—almost four million more than the number purged between 2006 and 2008. Of course, the problem was most pronounced in counties and election precincts with a history of racial oppression and voter suppression. Click here to make sure you are registered to vote, and make sure to share the links with others. Voting is the least we must do, but it’s also important.

WHAT’S NEXT FOR OUR BERNIE CAMPAIGN?

After a successful launch, our independent DSA for Bernie campaign is moving towards our next week of action on October 14-20 around the Green New Deal and Ecosocialism! From hosting debate watch parties on Tuesday October 15th to canvassing that weekend, there are so many ways chapters and members can get involved. If you’re on a YDSA campus, please click here to submit your event. And email dsaforbernie@dsausa.org to tell us what you’re doing or any help you need!

Remember, if you’re separately incorporated, it’s now time to file your reports with the FEC if you’ve spent money as part of our IE campaign. If you aren’t separately incorporated, please continue to report any spending to national as it happens. As always, refer to our IE memo for all key links and instructions!