Voter's Edge California Voter Guide
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Tuesday June 5, 2018 — California Primary Election
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United States

United States SenateCandidate for Senator

Photo of John Thompson Parker

John Thompson Parker

West Coast Coordinator International Action Center
22,788 votes (0.3%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Immediately declare a state of emergency in Black and Brown neighborhoods to address police murder with the initial step of ceasing the use of deadly force by police in communities where a majority of residents are Black or Latinx & end deportations.
  • Call for an immediate cessation of U.S. wars and proxy wars and divert the funding to vital social programs and for use in programs to reverse environmental damage.
  • Institute a referendum calling for the conversion of privately owned vital industry into public ownership



Profession:West Coast Coordinator International Action Center
West Coast Editor, Workers World Newspaper (2004–current)
Council Member, South Central Neighborhood Council — Elected position (2015–2015)
President, Empowerment Congress Central Area Neighborhood Development Council — Elected position (2011–2012)

Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters of California Education Fund (5)

What financing method(s) would you support to repair or improve roads, rails, ports, airports, the electrical grid and other infrastructure in the U.S.?
Answer from John Thompson Parker:

Forbes Magazine of February 2017 estimated that by 2053 the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq will have cost 12 trillion dollars. That doesn't even mention the current monies being spent for the U.S. proxy war in Syria or the wars in Yemen and elsewhere waged by the U.S. Financing for roads and all decaying infrastructure can easily be paid with the use of those funds now going to kill for the financial and industrial monopolies that run this country. Which is why my priority would be to immediately end U.S. wars and proxy wars.

What programs or legislation, if any, would you support to help Americans of all ages secure affordable health care?
Answer from John Thompson Parker:

Single payer health care is a first step. The for-profit health care system in the U.S. serves only the for-profit health care industry and pharmaceutical companies that facilitate death and hold all of us hostage with their prices based on the maximization of profits, not cost of production. We need to end the privatization of the pharmaceutical industry and immediately begin supplying the necessary medicine to those in need.

Describe an immigration policy that you would support if presented to the Senate.
Answer from John Thompson Parker:

Immigration must be understood in the context of U.S. imperialist wars. The current worldwide refugee crisis is a direct result of the U.S. war on Iraq, Libya and Syria. Most of the migration from Mexico and Central and South America is due to both economic and military wars waged by the U.S. against these regions, forcing workers to come over the border risking life and faced with constant terror of being deported. Migrants in this country contribute to the vast wealth of this country without benefit of social security or pensions, yet they pay taxes. Any policy must first take this into account. And, instead of making the lives of migrants worse, perhaps reparations should be due for the destablization of countries like, most recently Honduras. Any border control policies should be humane and more closely resemble the policies of those countries following humane policies as established by international norm. 

What programs or legislation would you support to meet the water needs of Californians and the federal water project infrastructure in California?
Answer from John Thompson Parker:

Like many problems, agribusiness and the decisions of growers do not reflect the sanity or needs of society but rather their need to maximize profits under this capitalist system. Their requirements and water usage could be greatly reduced if decisions on where crops are grown and the priorities of society were not left up to those who do not have society's needs as their concerns. Any solutions that do not help take control of the means of production, and that includes agricultural production, away from the private control of financial and industrial monopolists is inadequate and counterproductive. We need to make sure that crops requiring the most water do not get grown in the desert. We must ensure that decisions about water usage are not interfered with by the ownership of lands by, for example, Saudi Arabia. The solutions to drought must be analyzed by those whose interests are not inflluenced by profit.

According to a "Civility In America” survey, 75% of Americans believe that the U.S. has a major civility problem. If you are elected what will do to address this?
Answer from John Thompson Parker:

With a president who is proud to be a white supremacist, he dangerously encourages the worst ideologies of racism. And, hate crimes and murder against the Black trans community, the increased police killings of Black and Brown people every few hours is just one of the results. Racism and the ideology of white supremacy and fascism should be smashed. These are ideologies that attempt to weaken the unity of working and poor people. Our united struggle and solidarity with each other's struggles are key to our liberation from capitalism.

Who gave money to this candidate?


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Source: MapLight analysis of data from the Federal Election Commission.

Political Beliefs

Position Papers

Why I am Running


How a revolutionary uses the electoral struggle.

I’m not running to legitimize this system or the election process or give any false hopes that being in office allows you to change anything. Change takes the power of the peoples movement independent of the influences of the ruling class. And, in order to stay in office you have to play to the tune of the ruling class because it’s their structure and their laws. They prohibit any revolutionary changes that make a real difference in the progress of society. However, just in case I do get elected I can, as any politicians who say they are progressive can, use the amplified voice I would have to expose, expose, expose - not only the influence of the financial and industrial monopolies who run the politicians, but the war crimes, crimes against humanity and against our class both here and abroad. For example, I’d expose the fact that 8 million people from Yemen are expected to starve to death directly because of the U.S. war in cooperation with Saudi Arabia, while every few hours Black and Brown people are murdered by racist genocidal police who should be jailed immediately along with the police chiefs who enable them. And, I'd expose the real reason jobs and livable wages are being kept from us and the simple solutions to these problems that are not allowed by the banks and corporations. In other words, I’d use that position to motivate the movement to take over the reins of power.

I’d probably be able to do that for a very limited amount of time – but it is the only thing I should be doing. Stopping global warming, endless wars by the police, ICE and pentagon, and stopping racist, sexist and homophobic violence all begins by exposing the forces that allow them to continue and empowering the people to act outside of the boundaries of what’s acceptable. It’s the only thing these so-called progressive politicians should be doing in office – but instead they are enabling and encouraging compliance with this system.

For instance, here’s an example of what could be done. Perhaps my first day in office could be to start the groundwork amongst grassroots and progressive organizations on the left to work on mobilizing an occupation of the White House that was sustainable and could last for months. After the groundwork was laid maybe I’d call a press conference to the 100’s of millions my voice could reach from that platform and make a public call for the occupation. That would probably be my last day in office but that short time in office and the grassroots organizing I would have done would make a greater contribution to our struggle than any of these enabling politicians in office today, whether they be in office for 10 or 1000 years. And, who knows – depending on the state of the movement in the streets maybe I’d be able to stay a little while longer. That’s just one for instance, there’s many more.

In thinking about any electoral struggle, it’s important to understand that the executive and legislative branches of government have been rigged to ensure the status quo since the late 1800’s. That’s when the money of the Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, Mellons and Morgans, to name a few, locked up the system with the enormous profits they gained from cotton production – in other words slavery. Over 90% of the time whomever the majority of the largest financial and industrial monopolists favored with their donations won. Even in this election of Trump where he was supposedly outspent (not if you count the free media he got), the ruling class could have used the electoral college any way they wanted to change results - but I think they liked those promised tax cuts. Likewise in history, the electoral collage was used for that purpose, and was also used to help end Reconstruction.

The electoral struggle has to be used as a means to a revolutionary end - not in a way which enables acceptance of this unacceptable system of capitalism. The electoral struggle should not be a struggle for a career, it should be seen as one of the many tools that can be used to expose and abolish capitalism, not enable it. The measure of my success is not winning the office of senator, if that could happen – and I guess in an infinite universe, anything that can happen, will - then so be it. But, I’m not running for that purpose, I’m running to win our future. I’m running to quicken the pace of the revolutionary process liberating humanity from exploitation, oppression, poverty and war. I need your vote to do that. Let’s show others that our numbers are large and the revolutionary waters are warm, so they will feel compelled to come on in and start swimming.


Whatever we do, we can’t continue to accept and enable the unacceptable.

Videos (2)

— May 24, 2018 John Parker

Laying out priorities of this campaign with pictures of some of the struggles I've been involved in.

— May 24, 2018 John Thompson Parker

1-minute motivation for building a people's movement independent of the financial and industrial monopolies represented by the Democrats and Republicans.

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