Well, here’s an endorsement that Joe Biden probably didn’t need.
In an email sent to his party’s followers Saturday, Revolutionary Communist Party USA leader Bob Avakian urged them to vote for the Democratic presidential nominee, saying that the “struggle against this fascist regime” was more important than a “protest vote.”
Avakian — who bills himself on his website as “the most important political thinker and leader in the world today” — conceded that Biden wouldn’t be his first choice, but said that he was an acceptable compromise to the ultra-radical left.
“At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then — without placing fundamental reliance on this — using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held),” Avakian wrote.
“To be clear, this means not a ‘protest vote’ for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.”
The reason why is predictable — it’s “not because Biden (and the Democratic Party in general) have suddenly become something other than what they are: representatives and instruments of this exploitative, oppressive, and literally murderous system of capitalism-imperialism.”
It’s because President Donald Trump is a fascist, of course.
“The question is not whether Biden and the Democrats represent something ‘good,’ or whether, in fundamental terms, the Democrats are ‘better’ than the Republicans,” the letter read.
“Both of these parties are ruling class political parties, and none of their candidates represent anything ‘good’ in the most basic and essential sense. Biden is not ‘better’ than Trump, in any meaningful way — except that he is not Trump and is not part of the move to consolidate and enforce fascist rule, with everything that means.”
Should Joe Biden reject this endorsement?
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Avakian founded the party in 1975; according to Fox News, he’s been involved in a number of controversies, including support for Peru’s Shining Path guerrillas and a prison sentence for desecrating an American flag.
People’s World reported that Communist Party USA co-chair Rossana Cambron told the Marxist publication “[s]he knows some have hesitations about the Biden campaign.”
“This is a strategic action to remove Trump. The moment calls upon us to look beyond ourselves and do what’s best for all of us,” she said. “This is why we need a massive voter turnout in November, a victory margin so undeniable it cannot be contested.”
John Bachtell, former chair of the CPUSA, wrote an Op-Ed for People’s World in which he praised Biden’s transformation.
“As the crisis has deepened, Biden, and the Democratic Party as a whole, have evolved and adopted a more progressive governing agenda,” Bachtell wrote in May.
“He and the Democratic leadership recognize the scale of the crisis and festering problems of inequality, calling for solutions ‘not just to rebuild the economy, but to transform it.’”
And then there’s one of the last of the true 1970s-era revolutionaries left — Angela Davis, former Communist Party USA vice presidential candidate, who told Russian state media that Biden was the candidate who could be “most effectively pressured” into far-left positions.
Indeed, the fact that Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York — both self-declared democratic socialists — have been involved in Biden’s campaign, crafting policy, should tell you a lot.
Despite this, Biden wasn’t exactly the one crowing about Avakian throwing the Revolutionary Communist Party USA’s support behind him.
The Trump campaign, on the other hand, was positively elated.
“Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield just this morning made clear that ‘everybody who believes that Joe Biden should be president’ is welcome into this campaign.’ That now includes Bob Avakian, the radical founder and leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party who just endorsed Joe Biden and instructed fellow communists to support Biden in the election,” a news release from the Trump campaign released Monday read.
“Avakian once faced serious charges of rioting and assault for protesting in favor of Chinese communist Mao Zedong’s bloody and brutal regime. Avakian also titled his memoir ‘My Journey from Mainstream America To Revolutionary Communist.’ ‘Bob Avakian has taken the whole idea and conception of communism to another level,’ one of his admirers once wrote.”
“Joe Biden is too weak to be president and too weak to stand up to the radical left. He’s nothing more than an empty vessel for the extremist fringe of the Democrat Party, a terrifying cabal which now includes active communist leaders,” the missive concluded.
“They’ve taken over Joe Biden. Don’t let them take over America.”
While that last line is great campaign copy, I don’t think they’ve taken over Biden.
If anything, Biden and the Democrats have come to them.
The rhetoric from our communist friends is that they’re just going to stomach the Democratic nominee because Trump is a new kind of evil, one that requires a temporary suspension of the good fight.
It’s that the Democrats and their empty vessel have moved close enough to them that, if they can’t offer their full support, they can just shrug and say, “Eh. That’ll do.”
For the rest of us, however, it shouldn’t do.
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