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Democratic Socialist Federation

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Title: Democratic Socialist Federation  
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Subject: Socialist Party of America, Jewish Socialist Verband, 1877 St. Louis general strike, Communist Workers' Party (United States), Jerry White (socialist)
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Democratic Socialist Federation

Snapshot of Charles S. Zimmerman
ILGWU officer Charles S. Zimmerman (pictured) was a leader of Federation.

The Democratic Socialist Federation was founded by members of the Social Democratic Federation who had opposed the latter's 1956 reunification with the Socialist Party of America in 1956.

The Federation merged with the Socialist Party in March 1972. In December of that year, the Socialist Party–Social Democratic Federation voted to change its name to Social Democrats, USA.

Convention of December 1972

In its 1972 Convention, the Socialist Party had two Co-Chairmen, Bayard Rustin and Charles S. Zimmerman (of the International Ladies Garment Workers' Union,[1] ILGWU) and a First National Vice Chairman, James S. Glaser, who were re-elected by acclamation.[2]

The Party changed its name to "Social Democrats, USA" by a vote of 73 to 34.[2] Changing the name of the Socialist Party to "Social Democrats USA" was intended to be "realistic." [3]


  1. ^ Gerald Sorin, The Prophetic Minority: American Jewish Immigrant Radicals, 1880-1920. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1985; pg. 155.
  2. ^ a b c
    • Anonymous (31 December 1972). "Socialist Party now the Social Democrats, U.S.A.". New York Times. p. 36. Retrieved February 8, 2010. 
    The New York Times reported on the 1972 Convention on other days, e.g.,
    • Johnston, Laurie (31 December 1972). "Young Socialists support Meany; Group urges the Democrats to join labor movement". New York Times. p. 36. 
    • Johnston, Laurie (28 December 1972). "Young Socialists defeat motion favoring recognition of Cuba". New York Times. p. 15. 
  3. ^ Anonymous (27 December 1972). "Young Socialists open parley; to weigh 'New Politics' split". New York Times. p. 25. 

Further reading

  • The 1972 reunification of the Democratic Socialist Federation with the Socialist Party of America is discussed in Maurice Isserman, The Other American: The Life of Michael Harrington (New York: PublicAffairs, 2000). ISBN 1-891620-30-4.

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