Q: Can the Communist Party have an influence in America?

A: There is still a significant amount of anti-communism in the U.S., though much less than there used to be. We have waged and continue to wage battles both legal and public to defend our right to be a legal political party and to fully participate in the political life of our country.

The biggest obstacle is our small size. Even though we are small, we think we play an important role now — in being consistent fighters for workers’ rights, for unity, for internationalism, for peace, and against corporate control of the media and politics. We help point out the connections between today’s struggles to defend democracy and for progressive reforms, and the longer-range goal of socialism. We help create and build links between movements and organizations due to our involvement as activists in many different struggles. And we advocate building the broadest unity against Bush and the ultra-right. With more members, we would be able to play a larger role in helping to advance the political struggle.

We believe that in the long run, building a broad working-class-based electoral party is necessary. At the same time we believe that it is vital to have a Marxist party like ours that analyzes the path of struggle and links together many forces that ultimately are fighting the same enemy and that share a common vision of a better life for our people.

We invite readers to submit questions about the Communist Party USA, its basic policies, and a Marxist viewpoint on current social issues. The answers are provided by Marc Brodine, chair of the Washington State Communist Party. Questions can be sent to cpusa @ cpusa.org.