Friday, July 11, 2014

Interview with California Socialist Candidate

11 July 2014

By Mari P-A
The Red Vine

"This paper, much like the Weekly Worker, spends a lot of time discussing, criticizing and reporting on the left. It is important that organizations on the left engage in active discussions and debates to reach a common ground that leads us one step closer to unity. On that note, I interviewed Mimi Soltysik, the Socialist Party USA candidate for California State Assembly District 62 (including South Los Angeles and stretching to the Pacific) on behalf of The Red Vine:

What made you decide to run?
A few years ago, when we were organizing the Socialist Party Los Angeles Local, we set as a goal the possibility of supporting a local electoral campaign within two years. Two years later (2013), we discussed the idea again as a group, took a survey of our capacity to approach something like this, voted on the idea and decided to give it a shot. The approach was, while I would file the petitions and it would be my name on the ballot, we really wanted to use the campaign as a way for the members of the L.A. and Ventura Locals to engage in a dialogue with the community using a vehicle that had some built-in familiarity, to learn more about what our neighbors are facing, and to have an extended opportunity to listen.

We knew we were going to run an explicitly socialist campaign that pulled no punches, and thought that engaging the folks in the 62nd District with an electoral campaign might be a good way to begin this process. We had comparatively little in the way of financial resources, and we were fully aware of who and what we’d be facing as challengers, but we have a lot of hustle and determination. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit surprised about the final tally of votes. We were really pleased...."

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