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GLORIA LA RIVA

Socialist candidate for president visits Las Cruces

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The global health pandemic, police brutality and a host of other economic and social issues are causing fear and insecurity across the United States, Party for Socialism and Liberation (PSL) candidate Gloria La Riva said.

“The anger’s building,” La Riva said during an Oct. 1 campaign stop in Las Cruces. “The key is action – organized action.”

Giving the nation’s power and wealth to its workers instead of allowing it to remain concentrated in the hands of a small number of corporations and individuals is central to PSL’s platform, she said, and to changing the course for the United States.

“Socialism is humane,” La Riva said. “It’s for the people. It’s for everybody.”

La Riva said she has participated in protests against police brutality in Albuquerque and other cities across the country, and she has been arrested several times. She was even shot in the leg once with a rubber bullet.

PSL’s 2020 socialist campaign program includes making access to food, housing, water, education, health care and employment into guaranteed rights; replacing capitalism with socialism; ending racism, police brutality and mass incarceration; paying reparations to the African American community; giving full rights to all immigrants; shutting down all U.S. military bases around the world; honoring native treaties; giving full equality to the LGBTQ+ community; equality for women and abortion on demand; defending and expanding unions; and “the takeover of stolen wealth of the giant banks and corporations.”

La Riva said her candidacy is an important alternative to Republican President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden.

“I don’t want those two clowns,” is something La Riva said she has heard at many campaign stops across the country. Trump, she said, “should be in jail for what he’s done.”

“Working people scrape by with multiple jobs, accumulating debt,” is part of the message on a PSL 2020 campaign card. “It does not have to be like this. Every gain we made – Social Security, unemployment, civil rights – was won by people organizing in mass movements. We fight for reforms, but ultimately we need socialism, where all the wealth that workers produce is owned and shared by all.”

PSL was formed in 2004. La Riva was its presidential candidate in 2008 and 2016, and also was a third-party candidate for president in 1992, and four times for vice president.

In 2016, PSL was on the ballot in eight states, and La Riva received about 76,000 votes, or about 0.05 percent of the total national vote. Because of party members’ determination this year, despite COVID-19 restrictions, she said, PSL is on the ballot in 15 states (again including New Mexico), and hopes to receive more than 100,000 votes.

Through ballot access, “we gain much more than the vote,” La Riva said. “We let people know there’s a socialist party.”

“My support for Gloria, as for the PSL, is because she represents a real alternative for American politics,” said PSL member Ken Hammond of Las Cruces. “The two major parties are really just two sides of a system which supports and perpetuates the power of wealth over the lives of working people. Ordinary people need a way to express their frustration, and to, quite literally, cast a vote for something radically different. Gloria’s candidacy rejects ‘business as usual’ and stands for economic justice and social equality. New Mexicans want and deserve real democracy, not the revolving door of Democrats and Republicans who simply pass the buck back and forth without ever making real changes despite their repeated pledges and campaign promises,” Hammond said.

For more information, call 415-915-9071 or email info@lariva2020.org. Visit lariva2020.org and find the campaign on Facebook at pslweb.