Socialist candidates knocking on doors in West Chester – Daily Local

I get tons of emails from people who write stories. One particular email impressed you.

A few members of the Socialist Workers Party were canvassing in the area and they wondered if I wanted to talk.

The word socialist has been thrown around a lot lately, especially since Bernie Sanders was running for president.

Sure, I said, I’d like to knock on doors with two candidates and try to find out what socialism is. Keep in mind that these are only two members of the party, and their views may not be the same as those of every socialist.

It was different. On Sunday, we knocked on the door on S. Matlaka Street. Candidates mostly spoke to college students.

I love when candidates hug voters at home. This is pure democracy in action!

Socialist gubernatorial candidate Candace Wagner and Philadelphia’s 3rd Congressional District candidate Chris Hoepner told me they chose the street to visit by accident.

Typically, in the past, when I’ve campaigned with candidates, only residents selected from the super-voter list or members of the candidate’s own party have visited.

Both Wagner and Hoepner told me that neither the Republican nor the Democratic Party is the answer.

“We need to create a different world, and the working class is the most powerful class,” Wagner said. “We only say that we will organize people.

“We cannot trust the Democratic or Republican parties because they are the parties of the wealthy.

“It will take collective action.”

Hoeppner would agree.

“People don’t see a choice,” he said. “Let’s organize solidarity in the labor party on the basis of trade unions.”

Wagner delivers the message by visiting one residence at a time.

“We need to have a civil discussion,” said the gubernatorial candidate.

Höpner: “The socio-economic crisis in the world and in the USA is very deep. The workers must take a course to build a labor party that can challenge capitalist rule on the road to wresting power from the hands of the capitalists.’

Both Wagner and Hoeppner are union members.

A resident of Pittsburgh, Wagner is a freight train conductor and member of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and the railroad union.

Hoppner, who lives in South Philly, is also a freight train conductor and a member of the Sheet Metal, Aviation, Railroad and Transportation Workers union.

Wagner and Heppner noted that some companies force many workers into overtime. Wagner called the long hours “death shifts” and “divorce shifts.”

According to Wagner, employers prefer long hours to save on hiring additional employees and paying additional benefits.

Wagner talked about a husband and wife who work different shifts, take turns caring for the children and rarely see each other.

“Fewer workers are working more hours, and that’s more profitable, but it hurts family growth,” Wagner said.

Hoeppner wants to build a labor party by actively fighting unions that support universal health care, affordable child care and affordable housing for workers.

As an example, he cited the Cuban Revolution, which ensured that Cubans did not have to pay more than 10 percent of their wages for housing and farms owned by the people, not the banks.

Both candidates are in favor of ending the 60-year-old trade embargo with Cuba.

One resident told Wagner that she is pro-life, but favors legalizing abortion because abortions will continue anyway.

“Do you think we can change the world?” – asked the student/resident.

Wagner is in favor of legalizing abortion.

“Life is more than just having children,” she said. “We need affordable childcare.

“I don’t want people to have abortions just because they can’t afford to have children.”

Wagner told the resident that she was a feminist and that the recent Supreme Court decision “came too quickly,” was “not based on the Constitution” and was “just political.”

A resident asked about support for Israel, and Hoeppner said he supports Israel’s right to exist and talked about a solidarity march when the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh was attacked in 2018 and 11 people were killed.

“Scapegoating Jews for economic and social problems is a deadly threat to the working class, distracting working people from confronting the roots of the carnage we face—the dog-eat-dog system of private profit that Democrats and Republicans alike seek to uphold” , Hoeppner said in a press release.

Hoeppner told the resident that the party doesn’t have enough money to buy television ads.

I asked both candidates whether they have a chance to win the next election.

“I never say we’re going to lose,” Wagner said. “Everything can change.

“We always win.”

This may not be the year of the socialists — but who knows — maybe one day?

“This is a party that looks to the future and to what is happening to the workers and the people,” Wagner said.

“Socialism is not a theory, it is a movement of the working class,” Hoppner said.

Wagner told me that at some point the Socialist Workers Party would win.

Bill Rethew is a weekly columnist and native of Chester County. He likes the idea of ​​having more than two options. The best way to contact him is

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