The Socialist Party is launching an appeal for £50,000 to help fund our candidates in the 2015 elections. We are standing as part of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC - see www.tusc.org.uk) - working towards over 1,000 council candidates and 106 parliamentary candidates.
We aim with this historic challenge to help prepare the basis for a new mass workers' party. TUSC will provide the only alternative in May, based on implacable opposition to austerity and the self-serving capitalist politicians who promote it.
A vote for any of the main parties, including Ukip, means ramping up the misery the Con-Dem government has inflicted on us. Meanwhile MPs vote themselves a 15% raise - boosting their pay to £74,000 a year when workers' wages are being cut and our living standards are falling.
Even the other participants think their parties are running a no-choice election. One Labour front bencher, quoted in the New Statesman, said: "It's a battle between a shit Labour Party and a shit Conservative Party. The winner will be the one that's a little bit less shit."
But members of the Socialist Party are going into the elections with a different message. We can transform politics - ordinary workers, community campaigners and students can stand up and say: "enough is enough!"
45% of funds raised will be retained in areas where we stand, to help cover local campaign material. For example, it costs up to £1,500 for an election address to be delivered to every household in a constituency. We will also need nationally produced posters, leaflets and other material - for both the parliamentary and council elections.
Therefore we are asking every member and supporter to pledge a donation, redeemable by 30 April 2015. In previous campaigns, Socialist Party members have donated the equivalent of a week's income, paid over three or four months. It is that spirit of sacrifice we appeal to now.
We recognise this will be a struggle for some. But the Socialist Party has no rich backers; we can only rely on our members and supporters for finance. Your donations - whether ten pounds from a school student, or several hundred from someone in work - all make a vital contribution.