I received a letter from Lisa Ring on behalf of The People’s Party today. It began as follows:
“My name is Lisa Ring and I’m a two-time former candidate for Congress endorsed by Justice Democrats and Our Revolution. Today I’m thrilled to announce that I’m joining the People’s Party as our new development manager.
“Like so many of you, I’m fed up with the two-party system and I’m here to do something about it. I believe in the power of the people to transform this country. That’s what led me to activism in my 20s, inspired me to organize the Coast of Georgia for the past seven years, and drove me to run for Congress in GA-01 against a multi-millionaire Republican incumbent. We knocked on more than 50,000 doors and I advanced to the general as the Democratic Party nominee in 2018. I want to bring what I’ve learned to the People’s Party.”
So I had to write back, and I did:
I’m very glad you did what you did. I was for Bernie and worked for him in 2016 and 2020. I seriously considered joining The People’s Party in 2020 but frankly, I did not find them compelling enough. They seem to act as though they are the only answer. But they aren’t. I think the answer is for all progressives and socialists to have an organizing convention and have a truly unified party.
This party should support Biden only so long as he works for an agenda they can support. They should make it clear that Biden can count on them so long as he acts like a progressive president.
I wrote an article for Nation of Change on this very subject, and it was published on December 15, 2020. I asked there in part:
“Will we cooperate and try to bring Biden and his administration towards our way of thinking, or shall we strike out on a new road towards the social democracy that many of us want? . . . The best strategy for the People’s Party would be to try to get Bernie Sanders and very progressive members of Congress and state parties, to reach out to existing third parties (Greens, PSL, socialists and others), and to make the Bernie-ites understand that they have a home for their ideas.”
I still think that the People’s Party, the Bernie-ites, and the existing third parties should Band Together and make it clear to Biden that he cannot count on them unless he follows a progressive path towards the future. Mind you, I think he is doing a lot better now than I ever thought that he would in the past. I’m not ready to jump ship on him – not yet, at any rate. But I sure would like the progressives and socialists to get together as a group and prepare to go off on their own if they must. And if they don’t have to, then they’ll be organized and an important part of the group supporting Biden against the God Awful Party.
When I was interested in the People’s Party, I asked why there hadn’t been a progressive convention to get the entire group organized. They claimed that they had tried unsuccessfully to have one in the past. Well, I think that the time has really come. Lisa, I hope that since you are a Demexit, you’ll push hard for a progressive convention. We need agreement on what the common platform should be. And we need progressives and socialists to work together. Now.