We have officially gained ballot status in Maryland. A few dozen volunteers went to markets, parades, Motor Vehicle Administration offices, and stood on street corners. Together we collected over 14,000 signatures, more than the 10,000 the state requires.
We named our new party, Working Class Party, as a way to demonstrate our allegiance to our class. Speaking to tens of thousands of people to get the signatures, we discovered that this struck a chord with many people. When we talked about the importance of working people having our own political party and having a way to express our interests on a broader scale, many people were interested.
Workers' interests are opposed to their employers' interests. Having Working Class Party on the ballot in Maryland is one way to express that politically. It's a way to let workers' voices be heard, which doesn't happen under this two-party system.
The Working Class Party of Maryland is not administratively and officially linked to the Working Class Party of Michigan. But both parties have similar goals. And some of the first people to be active in Maryland had helped in or supported the campaigns of the Working Class Party of Michigan. Seeing the response this got in Michigan, some of us were convinced it was necessary to make a similar effort in Maryland.
So now we are official. Fortunately, we had done the work to get on the ballot before the Coronavirus crisis broke out. Now there is other work to do, and the situation will make that difficult. But the crisis connected to this disease, and the near collapse of the economy convinces us, all over again, that the working class must be heard. Not only heard. Workers will have to fight if we are going to defend ourselves. Our campaign, whatever form it will take, will be built around this idea.