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Vice Presidential candidate stops in Marshalltown

CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS — Malcolm Jarrett, the Vice Presidential candidate for the Socialist Workers Party spoke to workers at JBS in Marshalltown on Thursday. He has been making talking to workers at plants throughout the country to get a better understanding of the issues they are facing and to present the case why he and Presidential Socialist Workers Party candidate Alyson Kennedy are the best people for the job.

A Vice Presidential candidate stopped in Marshalltown on Thursday — the only one to do so since the caucus. However, the candidate was not incumbent Republican Mike Pence or Democrat Kamala Harris, but rather Malcolm Jarrett with the Socialist Workers Party.

Jarrett is a cook from Pittsburgh and was a member of the 2019 International May Day Brigade in Havana, Cuba. He is running with Presidential candidate Alyson Kennedy of Dallas, who is employed at Walmart.

The party is fighting for a working-class program to build unions and defend interests of employees.

Jarrett was in the parking lot of JBS for a shift change to talk to as many workers as possible.

“Plants represent a lot of what is happening with the working class today,” he said. “Taxes, unsafe working conditions — we need to organize a massive working class movement to point people in the right direction from this crisis.”

Jarrett said the high number of COVID-19 cases in meatpacking plants across the country highlights the working conditions many people face, such as cramped spaces and an increased speed in production.

“I am here to talk to workers about moving forward, to break from the Republican and Democrat parties,” Jarrett said. “More and more working people want to hear different ideas. They don’t like either candidate.”

The major political parties and the capitalist system are the main source behind the challenges workers are facing, he said. Conditions have remained stagnant since the George H.W. Bush administration, Jarrett said. Such as wages not increasing, millions of people still unemployed, high numbers of weekly work hours, increasing cost of health insurance and more hazardous work spaces.

“We want to use this election to get heard and be part of a resistance against the capitalist class,” he said. “That is where we will win. I think the Republican and Democrat candidates are entering a situation where they are weak, in a situation where there is a growing resistance to the capitalist class. Less working people have confidence in them. I think we will be on the winning side of this fight.”

So far, Jarrett said people have responded positively to the Socialist Workers Party. His next stop will be in Minneapolis. Then, Jarrett plans to return to Pittsburgh and participate in the scheduled steel workers strike on Nov. 3 — Election Day.

“I will be on the picket line about increasing health care costs,” he said. “I will be listening to the election results.”

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Contact Lana Bradstream at 641-753-6611 or lbradstream@timesrepublican.com.

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