The La Riva/Peltier Campaign calls for making a job or living income, healthcare, housing and education constitutional rights for all, an end to racist and anti-working class police brutality, and the shutting down of the more than 800 U.S. military bases around the world.
Gloria La Riva, activist with the Party for Socialism and Liberation, announced her 2020 presidential candidacy today in a public statement and addressed the growing urgency with which global matters require immediate attention.
“The world is facing unprecedented crises, none of which can be solved within the existing capitalist system,” said La Riva. “We are in a race against time. The need for the radical reorganization of society on a socialist basis has never been greater or more urgent.”
La Riva’s vice-presidential running mate is the renowned Native leader and political prisoner Leonard Peltier, who has been unjustly incarcerated for more than 43 years. He was railroaded into prison by the FBI and federal prosecutors in 1976, despite his innocence. A worldwide movement demands his freedom, an issue that La Riva’s candidacy intends to bring to light.
In a letter written from inside the Federal Corrections Unit in Coleman Florida, Peltier accepted the vice presidential nomination and wrote: “I am not only a Native traditionalist, but also a socialist, who is against any abuse and exploitation of the working and poor class.”
The La Riva/Peltier Campaign calls for making a job or living income, healthcare, housing and education constitutional rights for all, an end to racist and anti-working class police brutality, and the shutting down of the more than 800 U.S. military bases around the world. Access to full reproductive rights, including contraception and abortion must be guaranteed to all women. Equality in every area of life must be realized for women and LGBTQ people.
According to the Prison Policy Initiative’s 2019 report on mass incarceration, the U.S. criminal justice system holds almost 2.3 million people in prisons and jails across the country. “Mostly young, poor and disproportionately African American, Latino and Native people are held today in the largest system of mass incarceration in history,” explained La Riva. “With just 4 percent of global population, U.S. prisons hold a shocking 22 percent of the world’s prisoners. Meanwhile, Wall Street bankers who committed widespread fraud and evicted millions, and Big Pharma CEOs whose massive opioid drug pushing killed hundreds of thousands, walk free.”
“The greatest threats confronting the working class and humanity worldwide include the growing danger of new and wider wars, catastrophic climate change, and the corporate destruction of jobs on a mass scale,” La Riva continued, “which will mean even more devastating consequences in the looming economic crisis. Nearly 50 percent of the U.S. population are now dealing with unstable work, unaffordable housing, no savings, no health care, no retirement — and no sign that the future will be any different. Just four obscenely rich individuals now possess more wealth than 160 million people.”
“Both major parties have continued to allow the theft of Native lands and resources by mining and corporate agricultural interests in blatant disregard of indigenous sovereign rights. 33 percent of Native children live in poverty and many of the country’s poorest “counties” are reservations. We demand the honoring of Native treaties.
The La Riva/Peltier campaign supports every reform that helps poor and working people, while recognizing that confronting such dire crises with reform alone is not enough. “We need socialism,” stated La Riva. “Socialism is a system in where the wealth of society, created by the labor of working people is used to meet the needs of the people in a long-term, sustainable way. There are only two choices: to continue on the same path of increasingly destructive capitalism, or the socialist reorganization of society.”
(Gloria La Riva was the 2016 presidential candidate of the Party for Socialism, the Peace and Freedom Party in California, and the Liberty Union Party of Vermont. Leonard Peltier was the presidential candidate of the Peace and Freedom Party in 2004.)
The Party for Socialism and Liberation is running Gloria La Riva and Leonard Peltier for President and Vice President in the 2020 election. For more information on the campaign, visit the official campaign website.