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Mexico

Resolution of the Partido Revolucionario de los Trabajadores

Monday 26 November 2012, by PRT, Mexico

This resolution was adopted by the Central Committee of the PRT (Mexican section of the Fourth International) on 29 September 2012. At the beginning of September the Electoral Tribunal validated the much contested result of the presidential election of July 1st. Faced with the reurn of the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI – Institutional Revolutionary Party) to ruling the country it is more than ever urgent to build a new political force of the workers.

1. The fight against the imposed election of Peña Nieto has opened the possibility of a major political confrontation with the oligarchic regime and its parties. The outrageous fraudulent operation to impose Peña Nieto, which has completely adulterated the electoral system, bypassing all democratic rights, has resulted in a frontal clash with the democratic aspirations of millions of people who have illusions in the “real change” proposed by AMLO. This confrontation, whose central point was the fight to have the election voided, did not extend after July 1, 2012 through a call to mobilization by AMLO and MORENA. The appearance of the new student movement “I am the 132” offered a political perspective beyond the election by calling for a struggle against the imposed election and neo-liberalism. Under its leadership the National Convention Against the Imposed Election held in Atenco has appeared (with a second meeting to be held in Oaxaca), which brings together a wide spectrum of forces beyond the Progressive Coalition and MORENA. Despite attempts to impose the government of Peña Nieto, the latter has already been delegitimized and faces a political force opposed to him.

2. The position of AMLO, also adopted by MORENA on September 9, 2012, opens a more complicated and long term course to the fight against the oligarchic regime, and the imposed election specifically. This position has as its antecedent the signing between all the presidential candidates of “the agreement of civility” two weeks prior to the elections. If AMLO currently denounces as illegitimate the designation of EPN as president elect, he has opted for a strategy he calls “civil disobedience”, but which actually has a symbolic character, without struggle or mobilization. A strategy of civil disobedience should create a situation of ungovernability for an illegitimate and imposed regime, which is impossible without actions and mobilizations. This limited position weakens the struggle of the Convention by excluding MORENA from it and preventing the support of millions of voters for the plan of action, protest, mobilization and struggle of the Convention and the “I am the 132” movement. As Cardenas did in 1988-89 with the creation of the PRD, AMLO offers an internal organizational perspective to MORENA with the objective of creating a new political party, thus reducing the fight against the imposed election to a symbolic dimension. The decision to organise its own political forces is legitimate, but by doing this separately from the fight against the imposed election it weakens the latter.

3. The Convention is currently the broadest unitary space, within the logic of the united front, of the majority of forces opposed to the oligarchic regime and neo-liberalism. The Convention, while being the unitary space bringing together the left, mainly the extra-institutional left although minority sectors of MORENA participate despite the demobilising posture of AMLO, also reflects the limited social insertion of the left. If the posture of AMLO and MORENA does not weaken the Convention per se, it weakens the process of confrontation with the regime while marginalizing itself in the current economic climate. The idea that the broadest non-exclusive unity should be sought (which represented a call directed at the movement of López Obrador) is one of the achievements of the Convention of Atenco. The current position of MORENA and AMLO has the effect of introducing tensions and internal differentiations in the movement of the Convention, mainly because of the significance taken, since the withdrawal of MORENA, by intolerant and bigoted positions. Similar difficulties and confusions have caused the reflux of the “I am the 132” movement, which had a fundamental importance in the development of the Convention. In the development of the action plan up to December 1, 2012 (which has very important moments like the struggle against the labour law reform or the mobilization of October 2) it is necessary to preserve and strengthen the vitality and unity of the movement. During the third meeting of the Convention, which will be held in December, the program and strategy of the movement should be redefined towards a more long term struggle against the regime and neo-liberalism. As we see in the days of struggle against the reform of the Labour Act, it cannot be ruled out that the workers’ movement can play a role alongside the student movement. The strengthening of this dynamic building represents a challenge and the opportunity to see a change in the balance of power and to broaden the scope of political opportunities. In this context, the proposal of the SME and OPT to create a new federation of workers can play a central role. The third meeting of the Convention must preserve and amplify its united front character, while offering prospects for the continuation of the fight after December 1. The geographical extension of the struggle and the Convention can be strengthened by the creation of Conventions in the states of the Republic.

4 The separation of AMLO from PRD (and the parties of the Progressive Coalition) represents a contradictory fact. Firstly, as we have already said, it undermines the fight against the imposed election of EPN by channelling the social energy of MORENA to the organizational discussion, while on the other hand, the undeniably positive aspect of this break with the PRD is to accentuate the crisis of a bureaucratic organization that has legitimized EPN and to break its hegemony as a supposed single representative of the whole of “the left”. Finally, AMLO’s break with the PRD took place, even if in the civilized and “loving” manner that latterly characterizes Lopez Obrador. This manner of break, although “civilized” and correctly leaving the door open to future short-term agreements, does not contribute to the clarification of its meaning. The farewell to the PRD is the product of the distancing and the breakdown made inevitable by the apparent differences and the betrayals of the PRD since 2006. To this should be added the disputes which emerged during the struggle for the defence of oil in 2008, the line of alliance with the PAN in 2009 and the election campaign in the federal state of Mexico. This break could only be formalized by the appearance of a new party, given the reforms of the COFIPE voted for jointly by the PRI, the PAN and the PRD, which prevented the legalization of new parties before the 2012 elections. This event confirms the analysis made by the PRT since the Congress of 2009 and 2010, which stated that we were entering a period of crisis that would lead to a process of reorganization of all political forces, and to the demise and the emergence of new parties. The idea that the PRD has attempted to impose, since its foundation in 1989, namely that it alone represented the whole of the left, is now delegitimized by its growing loss of prestige. It is now obvious that the PRD does not in itself represent the left. It is part of the institutional left (functional to the system) and represents, on this field, one of the options of the latter to which will probably soon be added MORENA, transformed into a party. MORENA and AMLO represent another political current. As such, it is totally legitimate that they fight for their recognition and their own identity. The legitimacy of this search for recognition also applies to currents which are not part of this institutional left, such as organizations of workers like the OPT, the socialist left like the PRT as well as to other currents such as for example the Zapatistas and anarchists. The response of the PRD which proposes the creation of a “broad front” type party in order that there is not more than one “legalized” party (enjoying legal recognition) is unacceptable. This proposal would raise again the level of programmatic heterogeneity of the PRD, together with the reign of electoral pragmatism, opportunism and patronage.

5. MORENA is not our party. Since the Congress of the PRT, held in 2010, we had considered supporting the presidential candidacy of AMLO in 2012, as it offered the possibility of a political confrontation with the neo-liberal political regime. We had therefore left open the possibility of participation in the campaign within MORENA with our criticisms and policy proposals. This is what we have done in various places with more or less success. But participation in an election campaign led by MORENA is not the same as being part of a party building project. MORENA, as a political force, shares the strategic vision of the PRD that questions some aspects of neoliberalism, and endorses a liberal social perspective in line with other experiences of the Latin America left and the left around the world. MORENA’s multi-class composition prevents it from abandoning this political perspective. During the election campaign we evaluated the formation around AMLO as a broad multi-class pole, which represented the emergence of an alternative social bloc to that of the neoliberal oligarchy, whose anti-popular policies tended to isolate it socially and politically. This social isolation of a small and wealthy oligarchic group resulted in the migration of groups of entrepreneurs and sectors of the bourgeoisie towards the political opposition grouped around the candidacy of AMLO. Again, this dynamic of growth of the election campaign of AMLO on this terrain is explicable. However, the creation of a new party, another political force based on this multi-class block (which if it does not manage to incorporate all of the entrepreneurs who participated in the campaign, reserves for them however a “chair” at the programmatic level, even if - as Trotsky put it - it is only the shadow of the bourgeoisie which participates) marks definitively the character of the new party as falling within the framework of capitalism, while being critical of the current political system. In the context of the reorganization of the political forces and the current crisis, our option cannot be that of a multi-class party. Our choices must instead focus on a class based alternative as represented in embryonic manner by the OPT, which paves the way for the possible creation of a workers’ party. This radically different alternative may not be part of the options discussed in the so-called internal debate within MORENA, nor in the discussion on the alternative between party or movement, because these two positions share the same programmatic basis and because there is no real democratic discussion between the positions that would be different in the preparatory phase of the Congress of MORENA. As it is common to hear in the movement against the imposed election of EPN and in the media space, but also inside MORENA, the main criticism relating, incorrectly, to the PRD, is unrelated to its character and its program but focuses on the existence of “tribes” within it. It is foreseeable that during the organizational process of Morena the idea is imposed that the new party will be “different” from the PRD, because it will not allow the existence of “tribes”, currents, or groups. The way of posing the problem is contradictory because AMLO himself announced that the MORENA Congress will have to choose between two positions: becoming a political party or continuing as a movement. During the Congress, these two options will be defended by three texts defending the party based option and three texts defending the “movementist” option. The confusion that equates the “tribes” of the PRD with political currents, when they are actually interest groups, often leads to the undemocratic conclusion that it is the right to organize political currents that should be suppressed. These elements make it so impossible to attend the preparatory Convention of MORENA for those who defend an alternative position and represent a different party based option to that in construction. In addition, participation in the preparatory work for the Congress would of course commit those who took part.

6. It is necessary to strengthen the OPT [1] as a project for the constitution of a workers’ party. In the current debate, it is easier and more understandable to defend the option of a class based party starting from the experience underway in the OPT, which arose at the initiative of the most conscious sector of the Mexican working class in struggle, namely, the SME As noted in the first balance sheets of the OPT, the youth of the organization and the fact that it had to participate in the presidential election campaign from its foundation have not left it the time necessary to consolidate or clarify its political profile. The next National Council of the OPT, which will be held in October, will then be decisive because, as is normal, there is an internal debate about perspectives and the option that the OPT represents in the context of the current crisis. Understandably, there are within the OPT “echoes” of the present positions within the PRD and MORENA, which could call into question the original meaning of the proposal by the SME to create the OPT. The idea of a “party movement” which is expressed in the OPT has similarities to the idea of a “broad front party” present within the PRD or a “party movement” which would not have “dogmatic” ideological definitions and which is related to the multi-class proposal of AMLO for MORENA. Within the PRT, we have emphasized the importance of ratifying and repositioning the OPT from the perspective of the creation of a party of workers. This view is also shared by comrades representative of other currents organised within the OPT. It is this focus that marks our difference with other left currents, mainly institutional, which defend a multi-class option. The need to build the OPT as a democratic and pluralistic organization must not lead to opening it to a multi-class perspective. There is a need to maintain and further develop if necessary the existence of political currents, as accepted and practiced since the founding of the organization a year ago. These debates and those to come will confirm, on the condition that the OPT strengthens itself in other sectors of the working class, the validity of the posture that defends the existence of currents as well as the need for the presence of the PRT and its program within the OPT. In order for the OPT to represent a political option in the context of the current crisis, it is essential to ratify and confirm the perspective of the OPT as a broad party of workers and their organizations. It will be difficult, otherwise, to offer a perspective of broad political regroupment in the current period of reorganization of political forces. The political option represented by the PRT must also be deployed, but a broader alternative regrouping alternative is made necessary by the size of the forces involved.

7. The challenges and tasks of the PRT are numerous in the context of the crisis and the current recomposition.l In the first place at the political level with the analyses that we distribute. The OPT must seize the opportunity to integrate militants politicized during the recent struggles and movements. The PRT also has the ability to strengthen and increase contact with many comrades in struggle who have politicized and gained political experience and are searching for a militant alternative activist which defends the socialist, revolutionary, internationalist feminist, eco-socialist and democratic programme. That is why we need to move quickly in party organization. The urgent tasks include recruitment, the functioning of cells and base organizations, payment of dues guaranteeing the financing of activities of the party, the publication of Bandera Socialista, and documents of education and political analysis. It is not possible to address all these organizational issues in detail during the meeting of the Central Committee, or to develop a general plan. For this reason, a National Conference of organization is necessary, prior to the cadre school which will be held in December, but after the days of struggles that are underway with December 1 as their culminating point. The Central Committee support the Policy Committee of the preparation and the call for a National Organising Conference for December of this year, on the eve of the national cadre school, and the holding of the 13th National Congress of the PRT next year.

Central Committee of the PRT, Mexico, D.F. on September 29, 201