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International Statement in Support of the Left and Workers Front — Unity (FIT-U) in the Argentinian Elections

Hundreds of activists, intellectuals, trade union leaders, and political organizations from all over the world have signed this declaration in support of the Workers Left Front — Unity (FITU) in the Argentinian elections this Sunday.

Left Voice

October 19, 2023
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See all the signatories at La Izquierda Diario

Those of us who sign this declaration express our support for the candidacies of the Left and Workers Front-Unity (FIT-U) in the upcoming presidential elections on October 22 in Argentina. The FIT-U ticket is headed by Myriam Bregman and Nicolás Del Caño, together with Vanina Biasi, Cele Fierro, Patricio del Corro, and Mercedes Mendieta in the City of Buenos Aires; Rubén Pollo Sobrero, Christian Castillo, Néstor Pitrola, and Andrea Lanzette in the Province of Buenos Aires; Alejandro Vilca in Jujuy; Liliana Olivero in Córdoba; Andrea Villagra in Salta; Miguel del Plá in Santa Cruz; along with workers, popular, and youth fighters all over the country.

In the context of the worsening crisis of capitalism, wars, attacks on the living conditions of the masses, and the climate catastrophe, it is necessary to strengthen a left-wing, anti-capitalist, and socialist solution for a government of the working class.

The elections are taking place in the context of a new economic, political, and social collapse in Argentina, as well as a structural adjustment carried out by the Peronist government of the Frente de Todos/Unión por la Patria, which is being unloaded on the working class and the poor. We are in the presence of a political regime that has submitted to the dictates of the IMF, imperialism, multinationals, and the Argentinian bourgeoisie. The recent primary elections (PASO) revealed the enormous social and political discontent of millions of people. The people are fed up with the policies of the traditional capitalist parties that managed the national State in recent decades and worsened the living conditions of the masses. 

In these elections, the ultra right-wing Javier Milei, an emerging figure outside the traditional parties, was victorious. Milei proposes the dollarization of the economy, a fundamental labor reform to eliminate worker’s rights, and a privatization plan — a plan to attack the working class and intensify capitalist exploitation in Argentina. His vice presidential candidate and their constituents deny the dictatorship. In addition, they have promised to hand over the Malvinas (Falkland Islands) to the UK, privatize the rivers, and strip the rights won by the women’s movement and dissidents. The FIT-U intends to put up an active and united fight against this expression of the extreme Right.

Milei’s emergence took place in the context of discontent and anger with the government and the traditional bosses’ politicians, as well as the conservative political and ideological climate generated by the pressure of big capital and the capitalist political coalitions, which are in deep crisis. This is evident by the results of Patricia Bullrich, representative of the right wing of Juntos por el Cambio; and of Sergio Massa, Minister of Economy of the current government of Alberto Fernández, who is responsible for the structural adjustments of recent years. Only one day after the elections, in the context of very serious social conditions, Massa, at the request of the IMF, applied a new adjustment that makes food and other essential products more expensive, devaluing the currency by 22 percent. And now, with the pressure of his own electoral aspirations, he belatedly announced some measures for workers that are completely insufficient.

The FIT-U is a coalition of the working class and socialist left, including the Party of Socialist Workers (PTS), the Workers Party (PO), Socialist Left (IS), and the Socialist Workers Movement (MST). In this difficult scenario, the FIT-U has been the only referent of class independence linked to workers, the women’s movement, and youth movements to confront the parties of structural adjustment and fight in opposition to the growth of the right wing. In fact, the FIT-U is the only political force that opposes all governments that push austerity measures at the behest of imperialism, and it will again stand on the front line in the streets against Milei and anyone who seeks to curtail the rights of the people.

Of the five candidates running in the presidential elections, the FIT-U, with its presidential ticket headed by Myriam Bregman, is the only political alternative that proposes breaking with the IMF and not paying the debt. It is the only one calling on the workers, the youth, and all the exploited and oppressed sectors, to fight for a workers’ and popular program. It fights in defense of wages, pensions, unemployment insurance, equal distribution of working hours without affecting wages, and reduction of the working day to six hours without affecting wages or collective bargaining agreements. In addition, it is the only political alternative against real estate speculation, for the nationalization of the banks and foreign trade, and for the expropriation under workers’ control of the big companies that speculate with prices and people’s hunger. It also stands in defense of women’s and LGBTQ+ rights, against extractivism that plunders, destroys, and pollutes, and in defense of the environment and the rights of Indigenous peoples. 

This fight requires uniting all those who are exploited and divided by the bosses and the bureaucratic union leaderships — the employed, precarious, and unemployed. In addition, it requires supporting all the workers’, strikers’, popular, and youth struggles. With this program, the FIT-U calls on workers to confront both the government’s structural adjustment and the measures proposed by the right-wing opposition in the streets, following the path opened by the recent struggle of the people of Jujuy against an anti-democratic and bosses’ constitutional reform, and the great struggles of the independent strikers’ movement and the recovered unions. With this position, the FIT-U was at the forefront of confronting the organizers of a denialist and pro-dictatorship measure, both inside and outside the Legislature in Buenos Aires.

As seen in Argentina and other countries around the world, the policies of the center-left, or “progressivism,” govern for the capitalists and discipline the organizations of the working class with the collaboration of the trade union bureaucracy. They apply structural adjustment policies without solving any of the problems suffered by workers and popular sectors. They open the door for the Right and the extreme Right. The popular rebellions in Latin America mark the way to confront this offensive and open the way to the struggle for a workers’ government, and for socialism. 

The key lesson to learn from the last political cycle is that the extreme Right — Milei in Argentina, Bolsonaro in Brazil, Trump in the U.S., Le Pen and Zemmour in France, and Vox in Spain, cannot be fought with the application of structural adjustment measures onto the workers and the poor, or with right-wing policies. Faced with the crisis of the traditional right and the failure of the center-left variants — the “progressive” face of capitalist attacks against the working people — we need to defend a policy of class independence: to call on the working class and the masses to intervene, to support the struggles underway, and to overcome the paralysis imposed by the union bureaucracy. The working class and the masses must intervene for urgent demands, for a workers’ government, and for socialism.

In the upcoming national elections, the FIT-U is the only force that defends a program of struggle and class independence that can give a left political expression to the social rage of broad sectors of the working class, women, and youth. One that also fights to conquer new left-wing seats and use them in the struggle against the advance of the right wing and all those in power. The FIT-U objectively expresses a perspective of struggle. It fights for the working class to put forward its own program to face the current social crisis — to put forward a socialist solution to reorganize the whole economy in a democratic and rational way, according to the needs of the masses, not capitalist profits.

For all this, we — activists, personalities, intellectuals, leaders, and referents of the parties that claim to be workers, anti-imperialist, and/or leftist; of the labor movement, the peasantry, the youth, the women’s movement, the LGBTQ+ movement, the environmental movement, activists, and organizations that confront capitalist oppression — support the candidacies of the Left and Workers Front-Unity (FIT-U) in the upcoming presidential elections on October 22 in Argentina, and we call to broaden this support.

See all the signatories at La Izquierda Diario

First published in Spanish on La Izquierda Diario on October 18.

Translation by Molly Rosenzweig

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