When the U.S. Senator from Connecticut, Richard Blumenthal, attended an event held by the Connecticut People’s World Committee, it angered a lot of people. The organization has ties with the Communist Party USA, and there can be no justification for a recognized American politician sharing a table with people who sympathize with communism.
In politically opportunistic fashion, Senator Blumenthal claimed he attended only “to honor the great tradition of activism.” He stated, “You don’t have to agree with everyone or anyone with any party or any particular union or organization. I’m here to honor the great tradition of activism.”
The backlash was not long in coming. The fact that Sen. Blumenthal attended this event in the first place raises many questions about the state of the nation. His honoring of activism would never apply to anything conservative. There was obviously a sympathy for those associated with one of the most destructive ideologies that ever existed in history. It was not a harmless celebration of a few activists. When a U.S. senator identifies with this dangerous current, everyone should be concerned.
What Is the Connecticut People’s World Committee?
What makes the incident worse is the senator’s visit only helped give prestige to a group in much need of it. The Connecticut People’s World Committee is an obscure group without a heavy online presence. It is tied to the Communist online news publication the People’s World, a news aggregator for Marxist ideas. The Committee supplies items supposedly in favor of the Connecticut working class. Its Facebook page contains the usual communist buzzwords and phrases. Its activists make no secret that they identify with Marxist thought. This small organization lives off its ties to more important American communist entities.
The People’s World is one of these groups, being a long-running news publication that represents a spectrum of socialist and communist views. It supports a variety of revolutionary causes against those perceived as rich and powerful. The Connecticut People’s World Committee is also associated with the Communist Party USA (CPUSA), the nation’s most influential communist political organization. People’s World posts its articles on CPUSA’s website under the “News on Our Network” subsection. Overall, all these organizations are interconnected and not atomized groups.
Senator Blumenthal’s Political Maneuverings and the Backlash
This is not the first time Sen. Blumenthal has had to backtrack for awkward stands. When he initially ran for the U.S. Senate in 2010, he had to backtrack and apologize for significantly overstating the nature of his military service.
Now, Sen. Blumenthal is pleading simple ignorance of the Connecticut People’s World Committee, saying if he “had known the details, I wouldn’t have gone. … Let me just say very emphatically, I’m a Democrat and a strong believer in American capitalism.” He is trying to dismiss the outcry as a distraction.
However, his backtracking for attending the Connecticut People’s World Committee event can only be sincere if he manifests a complete rejection of communism and socialism. Any celebration of “activism” cannot include Marxist agitation reflecting class struggle. Sen. Blumenthal has no one to blame but himself for the backlash. The more relevant problem is that this support resonates with the more radical elements of the Democratic Party.
Out and Proud: The Rise of Communistic Ideologies in Today’s America
There was a time when such an association would have had drastic consequences for any major politician. This incident is just one example of how communism and socialism are gaining ground among the left. Other leftist groups are also gaining support. The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) reports that it has gained 10,000 new members during the early months of the COIVD-19 pandemic. It now claims to have almost 100,000 “comrades.” The increased instability in society due to COVID and civil unrest opens up opportunities for communists and socialists to gather more adherents.
It is now considered acceptable to adopt ideological positions responsible for countless deaths and misery. Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) are now household names and self-identify as democratic socialists. Between Bernie Sanders’ two unsuccessful but very popular primary runs as a Democratic Party presidential candidate in 2016 and 2020 and the election of four new DSA members to Congress between 2018 and 2020, there is a shift in how people think about communist/socialist ideologies.
Thus, when major politicians support small leftist groups like the Connecticut People’s World Committee, people need to take notice. There can be no justification for such support. Communism in all forms must be condemned.