US Politics

Hillary Clinton calls for escalation of US war in Syria, Iraq

By Bill Van Auken, 20 November 2015

The leading Democratic candidate advocated a no-fly zone in Syria, along with more special forces troops and intensified bombing.

Sanders outlines pro-capitalist, pro-war positions in speech on “democratic socialism”

By Patrick Martin, 20 November 2015

In a speech Thursday, Bernie Sanders presented a version of “socialism” that is based on support for war and “private companies that thrive and invest and grow in America.”

Trudeau promises Obama an enhanced Canada-US partnership

By Roger Jordan, 20 November 2015

In his first formal meeting with Obama, Canada’s Prime Minister pledged closer economic and security collaboration with the US, including in the war in Iraq and Syria.

The class character of the student protests on US campuses

By David Walsh, 17 November 2015

The student protests initiated over the past two weeks have a decidedly upper middle class character, aimed not at fighting for social equality but at carving out greater privileges for relatively privileged African American and other minority professionals.

Obama backs $607 billion Pentagon bill that bars Guantanamo closing

By Bill Van Auken, 12 November 2015

Nearly seven years after the US president promised to shut down the infamous prison camp, he is again signing into law a bill that mandates it remain open.

At Republican presidential debate

“Wages are too high,” declares billionaire Trump

By Patrick Martin, 12 November 2015

Tuesday night’s Republican debate was a blunt expression of the class policy of the US financial elite: cut wages to boost corporate profits.

Netanyahu visits White House seeking massive arms aid

By Patrick Martin, 11 November 2015

The main topic of discussion was a bid to increase the US military subsidy to Israel from $3 billion a year to $5 billion.

Leading New York state politicians on trial for corruption

By Philip Guelpa, 9 November 2015

The corruption trials of two prominent New York politicians, Democrat Sheldon Silver and Republican Dean Skelos, on fraud, extortion, bribery, and other charges, begin this month.

Republicans make limited gains in off-year US election

By a reporter, 6 November 2015

Scattered state and local elections saw extremely low turnout and high levels of campaign spending by “independent” political action committees financed by the wealthy.

US ramps up pressure on Beijing over South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 4 November 2015

The violation of Chinese maritime claims has nothing to do with upholding international law but is part of Washington’s “pivot to Asia” aimed at subordinating China to US interests.

US moves to dismiss insider trading charges in SAC Capital case

By Gabriel Black, 3 November 2015

The new judicial standard for insider trading cases established in a federal appeals court ruling in December amounts to a legal green light for illegal financial manipulation.

The elevation of Paul Ryan as US House speaker

By Patrick Martin, 2 November 2015

Ryan’s political views, once considered so extreme that even most Republicans were reluctant to cast votes for his budget plans, are now presented as “mainstream” or even “moderate.”

US-Pakistan summit fails to paper over growing strategic rift

By Sampath Perera and Keith Jones, 31 October 2015

Pakistani authorities have issued increasingly alarmed warnings that the US has upset the balance of power in South Asia through its military-strategic embrace of India.

Socialist Alternative proposes electoral alliance with Seattle Democrats

By Eric London, 31 October 2015

The pseudo-left group says that the election of a slate of Democrats to the Seattle City Council “would be a big step forward.”

The third Republican debate: The myth of “big government”

By Patrick Martin, 30 October 2015

The debate was dominated by demands for an end to all government regulation of big business and the destruction of social programs like Medicare and Social Security.

Obama reaches right-wing budget, debt deal with Republicans

By Patrick Martin, 28 October 2015

The bipartisan agreement favors the Pentagon and includes new cuts in Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security disability benefits.

UK’s courting of China sours relations with Washington

By Robert Stevens, 26 October 2015

US officials and advisors have warned that London is “playing a dangerous game” in developing its economic relations with Beijing.

Republican ultra-right faction backs Ryan as US House leader

By Patrick Martin, 26 October 2015

An advocate of the privatization of Medicare and elimination of most federal social programs, Ryan was nonetheless considered not right-wing enough by many in the House Freedom Caucus.

Pediatricians group calls for screening all US children for hunger

By Patrick Martin, 24 October 2015

The recommendation by the American Academy of Pediatrics is based on studies showing that 16 million US children are “food insecure.”

After the Democratic presidential debate

Pseudo-left groups step up promotion of Sanders and the Democrats

By Barry Grey, 24 October 2015

Behind the squabble over how to adapt to and promote the Sanders campaign, both Socialist Alternative and the ISO work to block the emergence of an independent political movement of the working class.

Clinton testifies before House Benghazi committee

By Patrick Martin, 23 October 2015

The televised circus in Washington covered up the real issue: the alliance of the US government with Al Qaeda forces in regime-change operations in both Libya and Syria.

Bernie Sanders endorses Obama’s decision to keep troops in Afghanistan

By Patrick Martin, 19 October 2015

The Democratic candidate for president refused to rule out unilateral US military action.

Bernie Sanders backs the prosecution of Edward Snowden

By Tom Hall, 17 October 2015

The call by Sanders for Snowden to be jailed for his exposure of illegal NSA spying starkly reveals his support for the American military-intelligence apparatus.

Bernie Sanders, the Democratic Party and socialism

By Joseph Kishore, 15 October 2015

Sanders proposes nothing that is genuinely socialist, combining a series of modest reform proposals with a defense of capitalism and support for imperialist war.

Democratic presidential debate: Nervousness and demagogy

By our reporter, 14 October 2015

The five candidates feigned sympathy with the problems of working people, but offered no solutions to the crisis of the capitalist system.

Obama’s “60 Minutes” interview and the crisis of US policy in Syria

By Barry Grey, 13 October 2015

Under aggressive questioning from moderator Steve Kroft, Obama was unable to present a coherent explanation of either the purpose of the war in Syria or the reasons for the fiasco to date of Washington’s drive to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

McCarthy withdrawal highlights deepening Republican Party crisis

By Patrick Martin, 9 October 2015

The Republican crisis has something of the character of a political iceberg, with nine-tenths or more beneath the surface.

Planned Parenthood fights congressional witch-hunt

By Evan Blake, 8 October 2015

The congressional hearing for Planned Parenthood, the most recent target of a right-wing smear campaign, showcased the degraded state of official politics in Washington.

A reply to redbaiting by the general counsel of the Detroit AFL-CIO

By Eric London, 8 October 2015

The UAW has called on the Metro Detroit AFL-CIO’s lead counsel, Bruce Miller, to launch a dishonest and desperate attack on the WSWS and the Autoworker Newsletter.

Actor Matt Damon repudiates criticisms, embraces Obama

By David Walsh, 8 October 2015

Damon, who made a series of critical comments about President Barack Obama starting in 2011, has had a change of heart.

Bernie Sanders backs Obama on Syria war

By Patrick Martin, 7 October 2015

The Vermont senator and presidential candidate issued a statement supporting the Obama’s policy of airstrikes against Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

The New York Times discovers a problem: Too many political parties

By Patrick Martin, 3 October 2015

According to an editorial in the leading US newspaper, voters should have fewer choices.

Surge of small donations helps Sanders match Clinton fund-raising

By Patrick Martin, 2 October 2015

The Vermont senator raised $26 million in the third quarter, compared to $28 million for the Democratic Party presidential frontrunner.

Behind the resignation of US House Speaker Boehner

By Patrick Martin, 28 September 2015

The ouster of the speaker of the House of Representatives demonstrates the growing influence of the ultra-right in official Washington.

Pakistan expresses alarm over ever-expanding US-India strategic partnership

By Sampath Perera, 28 September 2015

In the run-up to today’s meeting between Indian Prime Minister Modi and US President Obama, New Delhi and Washington have further enhanced their military-security ties.

A tense visit by Chinese president to the White House

By Peter Symonds, 26 September 2015

Obama and Xi both paid lip service to the need for greater cooperation, but the lack of agreement on key issues highlights the danger of confrontation and conflict.

US House Speaker John Boehner announces resignation

By Patrick Martin, 26 September 2015

The leader of the Republican majority in the House of Representatives faced growing opposition from an ultra-right faction in his own party.

The UAW and the Democratic Party

By Tom Mackaman, 22 September 2015

For all of the US labor movement’s militancy, self-sacrifice and social power, its Achilles heel has been its failure to free itself from the political domination of capitalist parties and politicians.

More bigotry from Republican presidential candidates

By Patrick Martin, 21 September 2015

Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, running second or third in polls of Republican presidential voters, said Sunday no Muslim should be allowed to become president of the United States.

Obama’s hypocrisy over Ahmed Mohamed, the boy who brought a clock to school

By David Walsh, 21 September 2015

The handcuffing and arrest of 14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed for bringing a digital clock to school in Irving, Texas, a Dallas suburb, was a repugnant act that smelled of racism and xenophobia.

Republican presidential debate: A reactionary political system in decay

By Patrick Martin, 18 September 2015

Each of the candidates is backed by a billionaire or billionaires, with Trump playing both roles in his own campaign.

US presidential campaign: Sanders opens up lead in Iowa, New Hampshire polls

By Patrick Martin, 15 September 2015

Support for Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton has plunged in polls in the two earliest voting states as well as nationally.

Obama administration suppresses account of CIA torture

By Patrick Martin, 12 September 2015

The US government has stamped “classified” on the declaration by a Guantanamo detainee of how he was tortured in a secret CIA prison.

Clinton pledges to outdo Obama in militarism

By Patrick Martin, 12 September 2015

In a speech and question-and-answer session at a Washington think tank, the Democratic frontrunner took an even more hard-line position than the current administration.

Bernie Sanders: A “socialist” promoted by the US government

By Patrick Martin, 10 September 2015

A long analysis of the Sanders campaign appeared Tuesday on the web site of the Voice of America, the official overseas broadcast service of the US government.

Labor Day in America

Union sellouts promote Democratic wage-cutters

By Jerry White, 8 September 2015

Amid mounting working-class anger and disgust with both big-business parties, the unions are working to promote the lie that the Democrats speak for the working man.

Newark, New Jersey’s “progressive” mayor Ras Baraka wins big business praise

By Fred Mazelis, 7 September 2015

After running for office on a platform of “change,” the successor to Cory Booker is proving a useful representative of the capitalist elite.

Obama secures votes to override congressional opposition to Iran deal

By Keith Jones, 7 September 2015

The White House has insisted the nuclear deal would actually facilitate military action against Iran if Washington deems it necessary.

Top aides to Hillary Clinton testify before Benghazi committee

By Patrick Martin, 4 September 2015

While they obsess over the possible mishandling of classified information, the Republicans and media have been largely indifferent to the content of the emails released so far.

New York Times paints Obama as “champion” of working people

By Andre Damon, 1 September 2015

The Times’ claim that President Obama has spent his administration “working to empower the economically marginal” is a political fabrication of the first order.

On 10-year anniversary of Katrina

Former presidents Bush and Clinton celebrate transformation of New Orleans

By Tom Hall, 31 August 2015

The Katrina catastrophe has been seized on by the political establishment to carry out a restructuring of class relations intended as a model for other cities.

Republican candidates attack the Fourteenth Amendment

By Patrick Martin, 24 August 2015

The demand for repeal of birthright citizenship, initiated by billionaire Donald Trump, marks a further shift to the right by the US ruling elite.

Hillary Clinton and Black Lives Matter: A revealing confrontation

By Patrick Martin, 22 August 2015

The much-publicized encounter sheds light on the essentially right-wing character of both the Democratic frontrunner and the proponents of identity politics.

Payment for services rendered: Obama prepares to cash in on presidency

By Patrick Martin, 19 August 2015

A New York Times article Monday described the process of aggressive fundraising for a billion-dollar “post-presidency.”

The cover-up of torture in America’s prisons

By Andre Damon, 18 August 2015

The media has maintained near-total silence on last week’s revelation that prisoners were tortured in Upstate New York with the apparent involvement of governor Andrew Cuomo.

AT&T collaboration with the NSA reveals US corporate-intelligence nexus

By Thomas Gaist, 17 August 2015

Classified NSA documents published this weekend have further exposed the vast scale of collaboration between the NSA and US telecommunications giants.

Republican candidate Trump backs deportation of millions

By Patrick Martin, 17 August 2015

Billionaire Donald Trump has called for deporting all 11 million undocumented workers, as well as their children born in the United States.

White House defends imprisonment of immigrant children

By Evan Blake, 13 August 2015

The Obama administration is appealing a court ruling that seeks to ban the imprisonment of hundreds of children and their mothers in immigration detention centers.

Democratic Party moves to drop “Jefferson-Jackson” name from fundraisers

By Tom Mackaman, 13 August 2015

The move to disassociate the Democratic Party from the two figures it has long claimed as its founders, allegedly because they were slave-owners, marks a new milestone in the party’s embrace of identity politics.

Sanders’ appeal to anger over inequality continues to draw crowds

By Tom Hall, 12 August 2015

The more than 100,000 people who attended Sanders’ recent rallies would not have found anything genuinely oppositional, let alone “socialist,” in the remarks of the senator from Vermont.

Republican presidential debate: The freak show at Quicken Loans Arena

By Patrick Martin, 8 August 2015

The ten candidates assembled on the stage represented and appealed to everything rotten and backward in American society.

Obama on Iran: The specter of World War III

By Bill Van Auken, 7 August 2015

The US president took the extraordinary step of going public in warning that powerful factions within Congress and the state apparatus are determined to go to war against Iran.

The oligarchs’ election

By Patrick Martin, 3 August 2015

A few dozen super-rich contributors are bankrolling—and thereby controlling—the 2016 presidential election campaign.

Sanders talks “left” and moves right

By Patrick Martin, 1 August 2015

After calling for a “political revolution” against the billionaires before a national audience Wednesday, Sanders spoke in quite a different vein to upper-middle class audiences Thursday and Friday.

The dark side of American politics

By Patrick Martin, 29 July 2015

The New York Times has retracted its claim that the Justice Department has launched a criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton, without revealing which government officials made the false allegation.

Failure of Iran nuclear pact will lead to war, Kerry warns

By Thomas Gaist, 29 July 2015

In response to bipartisan warmongering, Kerry insisted that the nuclear pact would serve as a stepping stone toward intensified confrontation with Tehran.

Obama promotes militarism and murder

By Patrick Martin, 23 July 2015

In a speech Tuesday to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the US president boasted of the success of US drone missile and assassination programs, listing a series of victims.

The US presidency for sale

By Patrick Martin, 20 July 2015

The 2016 US presidential election will be decided, not by the votes of the people, but by a flood of dollars from a small number of billionaires.

American Federation of Teachers endorses Clinton

By Tom Hall, 20 July 2015

The teachers’ union endorsement follows years of political subordination to the Democratic Party by top AFT bureaucrats.

Campaign fundraising in 2016 US election cycle soars to new records

By Andre Damon, 17 July 2015

Candidates have spent twice as much in the first half of this year as at the same point in the last presidential election cycle, with the total cost of the election expected to rise to $10 billion.

Wisconsin governor Walker implements draconian state budget

By George Gallanis, 16 July 2015

The 2015-2017 Wisconsin budget slashes hundreds of millions of dollars from the UW system, implements drug testing for public assistance and eliminates a number of labor protections.

Hillary Clinton outlines right-wing economic policies in New York City speech

By Andre Damon, 14 July 2015

Speaking at the New School in New York City, Clinton declared that her presidency would “empower” US businesses by cutting taxes and regulation.

Behind New York’s Cuomo-de Blasio feud

By Philip Guelpa and Fred Mazelis, 14 July 2015

The two leading New York Democrats are governing at a time of growing crisis and disgust with capitalist politics.

Eric Holder returns to law firm that represents Wall Street banks

By Tom Carter, 11 July 2015

For six years, Holder used the office of attorney general to benefit the financial elite. Now he is going back to work for them directly.

Trump redoubles racist invective against Mexican immigrants

By Patrick Martin, 9 July 2015

A three-page written statement claimed that Mexican immigration amounted to “infectious disease … pouring over the border.”

Republican candidates split over racist remarks by Donald Trump

By Patrick Martin, 6 July 2015

The billionaire developer and presidential candidate has made a series of fascistic rants against Mexican immigrants.

Bernie Sanders holds rally of 10,000 in Madison, Wisconsin

By Patrick Martin, 3 July 2015

The growth of support for Sanders is a reflection of widespread opposition to social inequality, which the senator is seeking to channel back into the framework of the Democratic Party.

Obama proposes rules to expand overtime pay for salaried workers

By Andre Damon, 1 July 2015

Despite being touted as a major new policy initiative by the White House, the proposed change to overtime rules would affect just 3.5 percent of US workers.

The economic nationalism of Bernie Sanders

By Tom Hall, 1 July 2015

The “socialist” senator and Democratic presidential candidate's nationalist appeals are designed to head off the emergence of an independent movement of the working class.

US Supreme Court upholds “excruciating” executions

By Joseph Kishore, 30 June 2015

The US Supreme Court on Monday ruled that executions using the sedative midazolam can go forward.

Why the politicians have united to take down the Confederate flag

By Barry Grey, 30 June 2015

The rush to take down symbols of racism that the American political establishment has kept in place for decades is a defensive response to an outpouring of public horror over the Charleston killings and popular hostility to racism.

Obama’s eulogy in Charleston, South Carolina

By Andre Damon, 29 June 2015

President Obama’s eulogy for the victims of this month’s shooting in Charleston was remarkable for its religious obscurantism and inability to seriously address any of the issues that led to the horrendous mass murder.

The US Supreme Court and marriage equality

By Tom Carter, 27 June 2015

The Supreme Court decision invalidates laws in a minority of US states that prohibit recognition of same-sex marriage and arbitrarily discriminate against homosexuals.

Paul Krugman’s apologia for Obamacare

By Andre Damon, 27 June 2015

Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman has responded to the Supreme Court’s ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act by declaring the health care overhaul a “policy triumph.”

US Supreme Court upholds Obamacare subsidies

By Kate Randall, 26 June 2015

The majority opinion states that without the subsidies the ACA would collapse, sending the insurance market into a “death spiral.”

The social roots of racism in America

By Andre Damon, 23 June 2015

The political establishment has seized upon the tragedy in Charleston to promote the conception that race is the fundamental category in American society.

Sanders campaign seeks to channel anger over inequality behind Democrats

By Patrick Martin, 22 June 2015

The Vermont senator offers no program for working people, but his attacks on economic inequality and the “billionaire class” have gained a hearing.

With appointment of Kenneth Feinberg to oversee cuts

White House steps up assault on pensions

By Andre Damon, 20 June 2015

The White House said Wednesday that it will grant long-time Washington fixer Kenneth Feinberg the power to unilaterally slash the benefits of retirees in multiemployer pension funds.

As efforts to train new Iraqi army flounder

US secretary of defense threatens breakup of Iraq

By Thomas Gaist, 19 June 2015

Washington increasingly seeks to rule Iraq through a network of tribal-based sectarian proxy forces, reinforced by thousands of US “advisers.”

Delay on TPP prompts warnings to US from Asia

By Nick Beams, 19 June 2015

The US has received a blunt warning about shifting relations in Asia from Singapore’s foreign minister.

Jeb Bush launches campaign for Republican presidential nomination

By Patrick Martin, 18 June 2015

The official two-party system has shifted so far to the right that Bush is regarded as too moderate by much of the Republican Party base.

Obama, Republicans join forces to salvage trade bill

By Patrick Martin, 17 June 2015

The campaign of the White House and congressional Republicans in support of the TPP shatters the conventional picture of official Washington, supposedly divided into intransigent partisan camps.

US House approves measure blocking training of neo-Nazi militia in Ukraine

By Niles Williamson, 17 June 2015

The passage of the amendment to the House’s Pentagon budget bill restricting support for the Azov Battalion is a further confirmation of the leading role played by fascist forces in Ukraine.

Hillary Clinton launches her presidential campaign

By Patrick Martin, 15 June 2015

Speaking before an audience of Democratic Party hacks and union officials, Clinton combined empty demagogy with contempt for the intelligence of the population.

House vote deals setback to Obama trade bill

By Patrick Martin, 13 June 2015

Sections of both the Democratic and Republican parties combined to block passage of a Trade Promotion Authority bill.

Mounting opposition to Democratic politicians in New York

By Fred Mazelis, 9 June 2015

A new poll provides a pale reflection of the depth of public anger over corruption and inequality.

The fraudulent debate over NSA reform

By Patrick Martin, 30 May 2015

Whether Section 215 of the Patriot Act is extended or allowed to expire, the vast US government apparatus for spying on the American people will continue unabated.