Saskatchewan election loss marks latest debacle for NDP

cam stoten smashIf the definition of insanity, to quote a statement popularly misattributed to Einstein, is doing the same thing over and over but expecting different results, the leadership of the provincial and federal NDP (with the possible exception of Nova Scotia) is in dire straits. The party suffered its latest humiliating defeat on April 4 in the Saskatchewan provincial election, which returned Premier Brad Wall to power with a third majority government for the Saskatchewan Party. Mirroring similar debacles for the NDP across Canada, the party’s latest loss ironically comes at a time when voters are increasingly open to socialist ideas. But in the absence of a bold socialist alternative, the status quo tends to prevail, as illustrated by Wall’s resounding victory.

Gary “Bernie Sanders” Burrill wins Nova Scotia NDP leadership

gary burrill new ndp leaderOn Saturday, February 27th, members of the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party elected a new leader. Standing MLA and favourite Dave Wilson and MLA Lenore Zann were defeated by Gary Burrill. Burrill ran a left-wing, anti-austerity campaign which echoed with party members. Burrill committed himself to the “elimination of poverty and income inequality” and in many ways mirrored the messaging from the campaign of Bernie Sanders in the United States. He railed against the “1%”, promised to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour and committed to eliminate tuition fees. This enthused party members and led to a surge in party membership and record voter turnout of 74.2 per cent. The election of Burrill represents an earthquake inside the NSNDP.

NDP Convention 2016: Socialism or Bust

socialism or bustAs delegates gather for the 2016 Federal NDP Convention in Edmonton, everybody is discussing whether party leader Tom Mulcair will survive a leadership review. As important as this question is, what is far more important is what direction the party as a whole takes in the coming years. Greek mythology speaks of a many-headed serpent, the Hydra. Lopping off the head of the Hydra did not vanquish the beast – which merely grew back another. Similarly, simply changing the head of the NDP will not automatically allow the party to connect with the discontent in society. For that, we need to replace the entire bureaucratic clique that moved the party to the right, and build a new body based on the mass input of workers and youth.

Fightback Interviews Ontario NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo: “Turning left is a question of life or death”

cheri de novoWorkers and youth in Canada are looking for an alternative to austerity and capitalist crisis, and failing to provide one cost the NDP the 2015 federal election. Fightback recently sat down with Cheri DiNovo, provincial MPP for Parkdale-High Park, who has publicly called for federal NDP leader Tom Mulcair to step down for his role in the loss, to discuss the direction of the party. DiNovo started by highlighting the contrast between the bold politics of Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn, and the uninspiring talk of “balanced budgets” that dominated the federal NDP campaign (which during a time of capitalist crisis really means more austerity). “That contrast is so dramatic that people are starting to wake up,” said DiNovo.

The Corbyn Victory and the Future of the NDP

The remarkable victory of Jeremy Corbyn in the Labour Party’s recent leadership race was a political earthquake that has shaken British politics to the very core. The same economic and social factors that gave rise to the movement around Corbyn also exist in Canada, and the ruling class particularly fears that the growing radicalization of workers and youth in Canada will eventually find an expression in the NDP, something Mulcair and co. equally fear.

Defeat Harper, Vote NDP, Fight for Socialism

machinists support mulcairMillions of workers and youth are looking for a way to overthrow the Harper Conservatives. After almost 10 years in power, the Tories are being dragged down by corruption, secrecy, vindictiveness and now they are presiding over a new recession. The key question is: how can we get rid of this capitalist government?

Harper's cynical attempt to buy the election

stephen harper.jpg.size.xxlarge.promoThe way to win is by mobilizing an army of volunteers. While the Tories will use money to suppress the vote and demonize their opponents, the real change comes from committed volunteers knocking on doors. But these volunteers will only come if the NDP adopts bold socialist policies that will make a real difference in the lives of workers, youth, immigrants and women.

NDP Doldrums: Is there a way out?

Since the heady days of the 2011 “Orange Wave”, there has been a steady stream of bad news for the NDP, both provincially and federally. There have been humiliating defeats in British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and New Brunswick, plus low polls and lost by-elections for the federal NDP. Rank-and-file party members are asking themselves how to get out of this hole. In Ontario, members gathering at a November policy convention are deciding whether they need new leadership to turn things around. In the view of Fightback, we need something far more profound than just a change of face at the top.


NDP leadership’s pro-Israel stance provokes growing backlash within Party

Federal NDP leader Tom Mulcair has been facing a growing backlash from sections within the NDP over his support of Israel’s most recent attack of Gaza. The Israeli government has killed nearly 2,000 Palestinians as of the writing of this article, 80 per cent of whom have been civilians. 

BC NDP: What went wrong in the 2013 election?

bc ndp adrian dixThe BC NDP's loss in May came as a huge surprise to many, both in and out of BC. The party was expected to sweep the election, and many workers hoped that the party would undo much of the damage caused by over a decade of austerity under the Liberals. Instead, the party finished a disappointing second, failing to win over most of the working class that it was supposed to represent. Why did this happen? According to the BCNDP Election Review panel, it was a series of communication errors and poor campaign choices. But we need to dig a little deeper here to see what is really going on.



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