The Socialist Equality Party (United States)

Capitalism has failed in the United States and the entire world. The Socialist Equality Party is organizing the working class in the fight for socialism: the reorganization of all of economic life to serve social needs, not private profit.

Socialism means the abolition of all forms of inequality and exploitation. The fight for socialism is at the same time a fight against war, authoritarianism, environmental degradation and all the consequences of capitalist society.

Socialism must be fought for and won by the working class itself. It will be achieved only through a revolutionary movement that has as its aim the establishment of workers' power.

Socialism, moreover, cannot be realized in one country. All the great problems confronting mankind are global problems that require global solutions.

The fight for socialism, therefore, requires the unity and collaboration of workers in every country on the basis of a common program and perspective. The Socialist Equality Party works in political solidarity with the International Committee of the Fourth International, the World Party of Socialist Revolution founded by Leon Trotsky in 1938.

This page contains some of the key documents and statements on the history and program of the SEP.

Historical Foundations of the SEP

The program of the Socialist Equality Party is of a principled, not of a conjunctural and pragmatic character. It is based on an assimilation of the strategic revolutionary experiences of the working class and the international socialist movement.

The SEP traces its political ancestry to the fight for Trotskyism in the US that was initiated in 1928, when veteran revolutionary James P. Cannon, along with Canadian revolutionary Maurice Spector, declared their support for Trotsky's fight against the Stalinist degeneration of the Soviet Union.

The international Trotskyist movement has a long history of principled struggle against Stalinism, reformism and bourgeois nationalism. In the United States, the fight for Trotskyism was carried forward by the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), founded in 1938 under the leadership of Cannon, and then the Workers League, which was founded in 1966 after opposing the national opportunist degeneration of the SWP.

The Workers League, in political solidarity with the International Committee of the Fourth International, based its perspective on the revolutionary role of the American working class in opposition to all forms of nationalism and revisionism, as well as the pro-capitalist politics of the trade union bureaucracy. The Workers League played a significant role in many of the major battles of the working class in the 1970s and 1980s.

The Workers League was transformed into the SEP in 1995, which was followed by a similar transformation of all the sections of the ICFI.

Read the Historical and International Foundations
SEP Congress Resolutions and Reports

The Congress of the SEP is the highest body of the party. The SEP held its Founding Congress in 2008 and meets every two years to discuss and adopt resolutions on party policy and elect the party leadership. This section includes reports and resolutions from the SEP Congresses.

2021 SEP Summer School Lectures

Part One

Cliff Slaughter: A Political Biography (1928–1963)

Cliff Slaughter died on May 3, 2021, in Leeds, England, at the age of 92. His enduring contribution in the 1960s to the defense of Trotskyism stands in tragic contrast with his subsequent political opportunism and repudiation of revolutionary Marxism.

David North

The lessons of the 2021 Volvo strike

This lecture was delivered at the Socialist Equality Party (US) 2021 summer school, held August 1 through August 6, by Marcus Day, a writer for the World Socialist Web Site .

Marcus Day
Statements of the Socialist Equality Party
Recent online meetings

For a global strategy to stop the pandemic and save lives!

On Sunday, August 22, the World Socialist Web Site hosted an online event featuring leading scientists from around the world. It discussed the realistic and achievable measures that must be taken to eradicate the coronavirus, stop the wave of death and end the pandemic.

150 years since the Paris Commune

On Saturday, April 3, the WSWS hosted an international online meeting to mark the 150th anniversary of the Paris Commune of 1871.

David North, Alex Lantier, Barry Grey, Therese LeClerc

WSWS online meeting

150 years since the birth of Rosa Luxemburg

The meeting examined Luxemburg’s role as a Marxist theoretician and political leader, and discussed the significance of her legacy to the contemporary struggle to build a Marxist leadership.

Peter Schwarz, Ulrich Rippert, David North, Johannes Stern

WSWS online Q&A with David North and Eric London

Sylvia Ageloff and the assassination of Leon Trotsky

David North and Eric London speak on the significance of the latest revelations, in the context of the decades-long Security and the Fourth International investigation by the ICFI into Trotsky’s assassination by Stalin’s GPU.

David North, Eric London

For a Global Workers’ Inquest into the COVID-19 Pandemic

This Inquest is necessary to break through the cover-up, falsifications and misinformation that have been deployed to justify policies responsible for the avoidable deaths of millions since the initial detection of SARS-CoV-2.

Statement of the World Socialist Web Site International Editorial Board

COVID-19 must be eradicated to stop dangerous new variants

The emergence of the Omicron strain of COVID-19 is a devastating exposure of the herd immunity policy implemented by capitalist governments, which oppose lockdowns and other critical public health measures necessary to stop the spread of the disease.

WSWS Editorial Board

October 24 webinar: “How to Stop the Pandemic”

Scientists make powerful case for global COVID-19 elimination

The October 24 online webinar, “How to Stop the Pandemic,” marked a major advance in the development of a broad-based movement, rooted in the working class and informed by science, to fight for the elimination of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Joseph Kishore

Socialism and the Fight Against War

Fifteen years after the United States launched the “war on terror,” the entire world is being dragged into an ever-expanding maelstrom of imperialist violence.

Statement of the International Committee of the Fourth International

New York’s Ida disaster: A social crime in the center of world capitalism

The massive flooding in New York City—the wealthiest city in the world and home to the world’s high-est concentration of billionaires—has revealed the deadly consequences of the systemic defunding of social infrastructure and the impoverishment of masses of workers.

Daniel de Vries

The Florida condo disaster

The Surfside condo collapse is only the latest in a string of disasters in the United States that are the result of the decay of infrastructure and the undermining of health and safety regulations over the last four decades.

Niles Niemuth

The Texas abortion ban: A massive assault on democratic rights

The US Supreme Court’s decision to allow the Texas abortion ban to go into effect September 1 must be opposed by the entire working class. The right to free, safe and legal abortion is a fundamental democratic right.

Patrick Martin

Autumn strike wave pits workers against the corporatist trade unions

The resurgence of the class struggle has clearly exposed the real character of the “unions,” which are better described as labor syndicates—corporatist instruments of management and the state dedicated to the suppression of working-class opposition.

Jerry White

John Deere strike at the crossroads

In the week since workers voted down a second company proposal backed by the United Auto Workers union, Deere management has gone on the offensive. The path to the strike’s victory exists, but only if workers take the initiative and break the UAW’s isolation of the struggle.

Jerry White

Stop the deportation of Haitian refugees!

Scenes of border agents on horseback charging and whipping defenseless Haitian immigrants on the US southern border have provoked shock and revulsion across America and around the world.

Bill Van Auken

Free Julian Assange!

This resolution was unanimously adopted by the Socialist Equality Party Congress, held July 22–27.

The horrific persecution of Julian Assange continues

The attempted US extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange resumed yesterday with the opening of a hearing into a US government appeal. It is a legal abomination in pursuit of a heinous crime.

Thomas Scripps

Membership in the Socialist Equality Party is based on agreement with its Statement of Principles. The principles of the SEP incorporate the essential experiences of the revolutionary upheavals of the 20th century and the corresponding struggle waged by Marxists for the program of world socialist revolution.

Read the Statement of Principles
The International Youth and Students for Social Equality

The International Youth and Students for Social Equality (IYSSE) is the student and youth movement of the Socialist Equality Party. It fights to unite students and young people for peace, equality, the rights of the working class and socialism.

More about the IYSSE