Futile Attempts to Get Ruling Factions to Unite and Cooperate

November 13, 2020. Signs added to the fence in front of the White House.

In his victory speech November 7 and during his campaign, Joe Biden emphasized that it is time for the ruling factions to unite and cooperate. This is necessary to preserve the Union, he said. 

The more acrimonious the disputes become between the factions which comprise the ruling class in the United States, the more talk of unity sounds hollow. The disputed election itself and the many disputes within and between the presidency and military and federal and state governments all reflect the intense conflicts now raging among the ruling oligarchs. Expressions of concern that they could break out into an open violent civil war are becoming increasingly shrill.

The possibility of the contradiction degenerating into open violence has been further underlined by Trump's refusal to concede defeat in the election. In addition, he is making changes to his cabinet that point to his willingness to resort to violent means to suppress the opposition. This violence would more likely be directed against the people to start with. A general strike has been called by unions representing more than 600,000 workers across the country, including teachers, health care workers, flight attendants, auto workers and many more. The rulers are deathly afraid of the workers uniting and together rejecting the role they have been assigned where they are not considered citizens who determine the direction of the economy and politics but are described as "consumers," "producers," "clients," "voters," "Blacks," "whites, "delinquents" and the like, to avoid them emerging as a social force in the political life of the country. In the face of the people's striving for empowerment, Biden is urging the factions to now unite and for Trump to be isolated to such an extent he is forced to concede.

One form the current battle takes is Trump's refusal to allow the usual transition process to proceed. This involves the General Services Administration (GSA) "ascertaining" that the election has produced a clear winner. The GSA is supposed to be a "non-partisan" body within the Office of the Executive but so far it is refusing to ascertain the election of Biden and, along with it, hand over the resources the president-elect requires to establish the transition and "hit the ground running" when the inauguration takes place. Millions of dollars in resources are being withheld, which includes not only money to pay staff and office rentals but also access to intelligence briefings, secure phones for calling foreign leaders, gaining security clearances for top officials. Biden forces are insisting that the GSA cooperate and Trump has so far successfully blocked them. A lawsuit by Biden is being considered.

The main effort here involves Biden seizing the reins of power that the presidency provides. This is couched in threatening language about how a failure to be ready threatens national security. "America's national security and economic interests depend on the federal government signalling clearly and swiftly that the United States government will respect the will of the American people and engage in a smooth and peaceful transfer of power," the Biden team stated.

As has been the case throughout the election process, the concern about a "peaceful transition" reflects the intensity of the conflicts and the rulers' recognition of the potential for violence within their ranks and against the people in a manner that threatens the Union and their continued rule.

Various Republicans, including Trump loyalists like Lindsey Graham, the senior Senator from South Carolina who has served as chairman of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary since 2019, are now saying Biden should get the intelligence briefings and the transition should proceed while the lawsuits contesting the election results are being resolved. "I think he should get the information. [...] I just think it's part of the transition. And if in fact he does win in the end, I think they need to be able to hit the ground running," said Republican Senator John Cornyn of Texas, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Other Republican Senators making similar comments include Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Mike Rounds of South Dakota, James Lankford of Oklahoma, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and both Missouri Senators Roy Blunt and Josh Howley.

Biden's Call for Unity in Victory Speech

Biden's victory speech repeated calls for unity, directed at the vying factions among the rulers. Echoing former President Obama, he said, "I pledge to be a president who seeks not to divide but unify, who doesn't see red states and blue states, only sees the United States." The reference to red and blue states is to the divide between Democrats and Republicans. This refers not to the people, but to the factions. The concern is the potential for the Union, the United States, to fracture.

This basic theme is repeated: "The refusal of Democrats and Republicans to cooperate with one another is not some mysterious force beyond our control, it's a decision, a choice we make. If we can decide not to cooperate, then we can decide to cooperate." He adds, "It's time to put away the harsh rhetoric, lower the temperature, see each other again, listen to each other again. To make progress, we have to stop treating our opponents as our enemies. They are not our enemies. They're Americans."

Biden attempts to claim a mandate from the people, saying "They want us to cooperate in their interests, and that's the choice I'll make. I'll call on Congress, Democrats and Republicans alike, to make that choice with me." And then, "This is the United States of America. There's never been anything, never been anything, we've been not able to do when we've done it together."

The emphasis is that for the United States to maintain its place as superpower and "indispensable nation," it has to remain united.

It is not the people of the country that are describing each other as enemies and refusing to cooperate. On the contrary, the stand across the country in relation to going all out to assist each other in coping with COVID-19 and to provide care despite lack of protection; the more than 20 million people directly involved in demanding equality and justice and an end to racist police killings and the millions more supporting them; the many millions who stood against separation of children from their parents at the border -- show the united drive of the people for a different direction for the country. While many rejoice that Trump is out, most, like nurses and teachers, are also already engaged in pursuing the fight for rights. Their united efforts are for a new direction for politics and the economy, a direction that favours the interests of the people by putting their rights front and centre.

Voice of Revolution is a publication of the U.S. Marxist-Leninist Organization.

(Photos: A. Cole, Popular Mobilization Portland, California Nurses Assn)

This article was published in

Volume 50 Number 44 - November 14, 2020

Article Link:
Futile Attempts to Get Ruling Factions to Unite and Cooperate - Voice of Revolution


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