This week saw the launch of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition or TUSC. It is an alliance, as you might guess, of socialists and trade unionists who are sick of the cuts and privatisation proposed by all three main parties, who oppose the racism of the far right and want to put forward a genuine, socialist alternative in the interests of ordinary people.
It is not clear yet in how many seats the new party will stand in, but early signs are promising. The Scotsman reported on a meeting in Glasgow led by Bob Crow (leader of the RMT) in attempt to unify the Scottish Socialist Party and Solidarity, two parties which have been standing against each other in recent elections. As a dip in their support has shown, we are stringer when we can campaign together rather than separately. If successful, I think this is a very welcome opportunity for the left in Scotland.
Can we do something similar in England? Already a number of groups have gathered under the banner – the CPB, Indian Workers’ Association, Socialist Party and Alliance for Green Socialism amongst them. If we can put our differences aside, and campaign together in a federal organisation, then this has to be good for the prospects of building a new mass party to represent the interests of ordinary people.
Meanwhile, the onus is on all of us who wan’t to see something better than the three main parties to get behind this coalition, get doorknocking for the general election and spread the word. There is little time until May and there is a lot of work to be done.
To sign up as a launch sponsor of TUSC, in a personal capacity, send the necessary details (name, address, trade union/position, etc) to TUSC, 17 Colebert House, Colebert Avenue, London E1 4JP or e-mail the firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.