Party of Communists USA

Constitution and Statutes

Statutes of the Party of Communists USA


The Party of Communists USA (PCUSA) bases its theory generally on the scientific, humanist and democratic heritage of mankind and particularly on the principles of scientific socialism as developed by Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, V. I. Lenin and Stalin. The Party of Communists USA interprets, applies and strives to develop further in accordance with the requirements of the American class struggle, democratic traditions and customs. In the struggle for democracy, peace and social progress, the Party of Communists USA strives to carry forward the revolutionary democratic traditions of Jefferson, Paine, Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, and the great working-class and socialist traditions of William Sylvis, Eugene V. Debs and Charles E. Ruthenberg.

In the struggle for socialism and against US imperialism and fascism, the Party of Communists USA seeks no narrow sectarian monopoly. It fights side by side with all who struggle for socialism and against US imperialism and fascism and seeks to unite with all socialist-minded and democratic-minded Americans to preserve our civil liberties and to achieve socialism.

The Party of Communists USA is the political party of the working class and is dedicated to the interests of all working people, and the oppressed. Its aim is a socialist society, on the road to building communism.

Socialism-communism will act in the interests of the people and the planet rather than for the profit of capitalist corporations. Only through abolition of the capitalist system and the socialist reorganization of society can exploitation of one human being by another be ended, and with it the evils of oppression, war, racism, misogyny, poverty, and environmental destruction.

Capitalist “democracy” is based on the domination of our economic and political life by the owners of the multinational and other large monopoly corporations; this will be replaced by socialist reorganization of society based on the public ownership and operation of the means of production, within a state led by the working class. Socialism will initiate the end to the system of private profit and build support for a new worldwide social and economic system based on peace and equality.

Socialism will be the start of effectively addressing the problem of racial and ethnic conflict within the United States, including assimilating new arrivals to our shores.

At the center of the PCUSA program is the struggle for world peace, democracy, equality, opposition to all forms of bigotry, and for improvement of daily living conditions of all working people.

Among the highest priorities of our Party is support for the right of labor to organize.

Within the Labor Movement we emphasize workers struggling for jobs and full employment, improvement of working conditions, and aiding union organizing.

The struggle for the equality of all peoples is essential to social progress. Full economic, political and social equality is the goal of the PCUSA.

The fight for the full equality of women is also the struggle of the whole Party. Women constitute one-half of the population, but are treated as second class citizens. Historically they are paid less for the same work a man does.

Monopoly capital and the US government it dominates continually press in a reactionary, repressive direction, curtailing the democratic rights of the people, and increasing the threat of fascism. Our Party continually fights against this danger to expand the democratic rights of the people.

The working class is the only class capable of leading the people against capitalism and to socialism. It faces the capitalist class daily at the point of production and on all other fronts of class struggle. Because of our position in the system of production, our working class, through organization, have the greatest potential for taking political power.

The PCUSA is part of the working class, and a partisan of their interests. Through daily struggle, the PCUSA works to increase the class and socialist consciousness, and the need for the political independence of the working class, to unite our class to defeat the main tools of capitalist division, racism and anti-communism.

Our Party assists in bringing working people into the leadership of a growing All-People’s Alliance with all class and social strata whose interests clash with those of the monopolies. Only such an All-People’s Alliance, with the working class and Black people, and other oppressed nationalities at its core, can curb the power of the monopolies and open the path to the socialist reorganization of society. The PCUSA plays this leading role because it is based on scientific socialism, identified as Marxism-Leninism and its organizational principle of democratic centralism.

The PCUSA recognizes and fights for identity of interests among workers of all countries and for the right of oppressed people for self-determination, which is also in the true national interests of each country. In this spirit of working class internationalism, the PCUSA cherishes its solidarity with the world Communist movement and the socialist countries. It also strives for the closest bonds with the working class of the other capitalist countries.

In the struggle against U.S. imperialism, the world’s most powerful and aggressive imperialism, our Party works to build the solidarity of the U.S. working class with the developing countries, the national liberation movements and especially with the victims of U.S. imperialist aggression, exploitation and domination. Only through this world working class solidarity and anti-imperialist unity can peaceful coexistence as outlined by Lenin and Stalin be assured, and the world saved from nuclear war.

For the advancement of these principles, the Party of Communists USA establishes the basic laws of its organization in the following Constitution.


The organization shall be known as Party of Communists of the United States of America (PCUSA).


To build the militant workers movement by establishing the PCUSA as the revolutionary workers’ vanguard party, firmly rooted in the scientific principles of Marxism-Leninism, and the principled defense of the 20th Century Soviet experience through the implementation of class struggle strategies and tactics. The role of the Party is central to anti-racist, anti-monopoly, anti-imperialist, political independence from the bourgeois parties of monopoly capital in our country. Our purpose is to promote international working-class solidarity with the World Communist Movement through the science of dialectical and historical materialism, known historically as Marxism-Leninism.


Our goal is to build a Socialist society that will advance toward a classless Communist society. Producing printed periodicals for organizing, educating and agitation among the masses is the best way to establish the political leadership necessary to lead the working class. Directing the resources of our Party toward building an educational center for Marxist studies, and building Marxist-Leninist schools, opening bookstores with the goal of having a permanent organizing structure led by the PCUSA is the best method of achieving our goal. Our program is to organize cadre through building local Party Cells and a vigorous League of Young Communists (LYCUSA). The Party of Communists USA (PCUSA) and the League of Young Communists USA (LYCUSA) currently utilize the publication The PCUSA and How It Works as their organizational guide, and Joseph Stalin’s “The Foundations of Leninism” (1924).


1. Marxism-Leninism

We apply the science of Marxism-Leninism as the means to achieve supremacy of the working class and the oppressed.

2. Vanguard-Cadre Party

We maintain that the role of the party, as laid out by the Bolshevik experience, is that of a vanguard workers party, which opposes and organizes against the bourgeois state and its surrogate parties. Such a party acts as the general staff of the working class, educating, organizing and leading the proletariat in its struggle for liberation, and to that end the party must develop and train strong cadres to lead the struggle.

3. Dictatorship of the Proletariat

As Marx and Lenin wrote, we agree that organizing a class conscious working class is the only way to achieve liberation from the bourgeoisie-and that due to the inevitability of the class struggle and the nature of the state as the tool of oppression of one class by another, only the overthrow of the bourgeois state by the proletariat and the active destruction of the bourgeoisie by the dictatorship of the proletariat (Soviet power) will liquidate capitalism and consolidate the power of working-class interests to transform the social and economic relations of the United States into a socialist-communist state.

4. Democratic Centralism

The governing principle of the PCUSA is known as democratic centralism, which is what distinguishes us from the bourgeois parties. Decisions made at the level of the PCUSA Central Committee are based on discussions that have taken place within the basic units and districts of the party. Our clubs, also referred to as cells or fractions are the basic unit of the party upon which democratic centralism is anchored. The fundamental principle for building and organizing the work of the party, Democratic centralism combines the full initiative, right, and duty of party organizations to decide on questions within their scope of responsibility, with their accountability and regular reporting of activities to higher party bodies, and the subordination of the minority to the majority and strict discipline once a decision has been made. Underestimation or rejection of democratic centralism is typical of revisionists, testifying to their non-scientific approach and the influence of bourgeois and petty bourgeois ideology.

5. Proletarian Internationalism

We support the international working class, and the struggle of the oppressed peoples for liberation from imperialist domination and exploitation within this country and around the world, and oppose all forms of imperialism worldwide, fighting especially against the mechanisms of imperialism created and maintained by the current bourgeois regime in our own country, and will actively oppose and work to end its wars of imperialist adventurism around the globe.

6. Support for real existing socialism of the 20th century

We support and uphold the legacy and lessons of the socialist revolutionary movement of the 20th century, and the contributions of Lenin, Stalin and other leading Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries. We will defend that legacy against defamation by revisionists, capitalists, Trotskyites, Maoists, social democrats, anarchists, Cold War liberal bourgeoisie and petite-bourgeoisie “phony left” radicals who undermine the revolutionary history and struggle of Marxist-Leninist theory and practice. We will reject the so-called 21st century socialism and Euro communism as revisionist attempts to promote reformist schemes and market socialism over true revolutionary struggle and socialist collectivization. We reject all unscientific and dogmatic vulgar Marxism.

7. Continuing Lenin’s opposition to right opportunism and revisionism inside the World Communist Movement

We oppose all forms of right opportunism and revisionism to supplant Marxist-Leninist ideology in the world Communist movement, historically and especially exemplified by the current leadership of the CPUSA. We identify this revisionism as an intrusion of bourgeois ideology that weakens and distorts our theory, practice, and purpose, leading to class collaboration and counter-revolution. 

Our Party presents an illustration of walking a tightrope, with right opportunism on one side, and ultra-leftism on the other, representing ideological divergence on our path to socialism. 

Class consciousness is the primary focus of our Party’s ideological work. As Marxists, we believe that the history of all hitherto existing society, is the history of class struggle. Our Party is a working class party and is not a hobby, nor one time event, nor an expression of petite bourgeois radicalism.

8. Revolution is the only means to the end goal of establishing the dictatorship of the proletariat and a scientific socialist society based on the science of Marxism-Leninism.

Our position is that class-conscious struggle for socialist revolution is the only means of achieving liberation for the working class. Further, that any measure of reformism, collaboration or conciliation with the bourgeoisie serves only to undermine and prolong workers’ struggle, leading to the further consolidation of capitalist power and dominance. “The immediate aim of the Communists is the same as that of all other proletarian parties: formation of the proletariat into a class, overthrow of the bourgeois supremacy, conquest of political power by the proletariat.” [Communist Manifesto, chapter ll, paragraph Vll]

ARTICLE II – continued


Party structure is as follows:

  1. Party Congress
  2. Central Committee
  3. Politburo. 8 titled officers, plus
  4. Secretariat – 8 Titled officers

Departments as of 2024 (Subject to change as needs arise.)

  • Membership Department
  • Finance Department
  • International Department
  • Organizational Department
  • Publication Department
  • Education Department
  • Ideological Department
  • Nationalities Department
  • Legislative and Electoral Department

PCUSA Districts

  1. East
  2. South
  3. Midwest
  4. West

Commissions are the Party’s think tanks. As of 2024 (subject to change as needs arise.) The Central Committee and the Politburo shall establish ad hoc commissions to carry out special areas of work.

  1. Arts & Culture Commission
  2. Asian Commission
  3. Black Liberation Commission
  4. Slavic Commission
  5. Irish Commission
  6. Civil Liberties Commission
  7. Environmental Commission
  8. Health & Disability Commission
  9. Indigenous Peoples Commission
  10. Jewish Commission
  11. Labor Commission
  12. LGBT+ Commission
  13. Peace & Solidarity Commission
  14. Religious Affairs Commission
  15. Veteran’s Commission
  16. Women’s Commission


Section 1

Membership in the PCUSA is extended to citizens who reside in the United States and residents who have lived in the United States for two years and who are 18 years of age or older. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the Politburo.

If one is less than 18 years of age they will be assigned to the League of Young Communists USA (LYC USA). At the age of 18, one can apply to become a member of the Party. However, they will remain a member of LYC USA to the age of 30.

If there is no LYC USA cell in the geographical area, the Party will assign the comrade to the local cell covering their geographical area. It is the responsibility of the local cell to accept and guide the comrade into their ranks. With the help of the local Party cell, it is expected that the comrade will build a local LYC cell.

All applicants for the Party and the Youth League must accept the Statutes and Program of the Party, and the PCUSA Eight Points of Marxist-Leninist Unity.

Conditions for membership in the party and youth league are contained in the following pledge created by the Party (CPUSA) in 1935 during the Popular Front at the Seventh Congress of the Comintern. The pledge has been updated to reflect the current realities and level of consciousness within our movement:

To create a better world, I now take my place in the ranks of the international communist movement and the Party of Communists USA, the party of the U.S. working class.

I take this pledge to give the best that is in me to the service of the working class.

I pledge myself to spare no effort in uniting workers in militant struggle against war, racism, imperialism, and fascism.

I pledge myself to work unsparingly in helping the organized labor movement, in the shops, among the unemployed, to lead the struggles for the daily needs of the American working class, understanding fully that the class struggle is a central ingredient in solving the oppression of working people and the oppressed.

I solemnly pledge to take my place in the forefront of the struggle for the rights of all nationally oppressed people; against anti-Soviet sentiments and behavior, anti-Communism, racism, misogyny, ageism, xenophobia, homophobia, trans-phobia, police brutality, discrimination against the disabled, and to struggle against the chauvinist lies of the capitalist class.

I pledge myself to rally the U.S. working class to defend the ideals of the former Soviet Union, and to support the former Soviet peoples in their struggle to reestablish the Soviet Union as a scientific socialist state.

I pledge myself to consistently remain a vigilant and firm defender of the Leninist line of our party, to ensure the establishment of scientific socialism in these United States, working to transfer power from the capitalist class to the working class.

The Party application for membership carries the following declaration:

“the undersigned declares their adherence to the Statutes and Programs of the PCUSA, agrees to submit to the discipline of the PCUSA and to engage actively in its work.”

The duties of candidates and cadre in the Party are as follows:

  • Participation in an appropriate Party-led organization
  • Regular payment of membership dues
  • Participation in the decision-making process of democratic centralism
  • Adherence to the discipline of the Party
  • Comrades are required to attend all of their cell meetings
  • Members are required to attend the weekly school, PSMLS, ( Peoples School for Marxist-Leninist Studies) to expand their political knowledge and their understanding of Marxism-Leninism
  • Members attend, as required, the Party School, (Jones-Foster School for Party Education), where Party policy, strategy, and tactics are explained.
  • To carry out the aims and policies of the Party,
  • To seek to win new members
  • To read and circulate Party publications, making this central in their mass work

Section 2

Subject to the provisions of Article III, any member shall be subject to disciplinary action which can result in censure, suspension, and then expulsion from the Party, that actively promotes factionalism, (organized opposition against Party leadership and/or any Party policies), or is an agent-provocateur, an informant, or one that engages with, or uses federally illegal substances*, or allows alcohol or substance abuse to visibly interfere with their party work and their ability to interact with the party and its membership. ( * if arrested for illegal federal substances, that information will compromise the Party’s public status.)


Section 1

Every member of the Party who is in good standing has the right and duty to participate in the making of its policies and in their execution and to participate in the elections of the Party bodies to which they belong.

Provided that the Party has not adopted a decision, a Party member has the right to express openly their opinion or differences on any question using Party procedures currently in use.

After a decision, a Party member who disagrees has the right to present a motion at the next National Congress. At the same time every member has the duty to carry out the collective majority decision publicly and internally.

During the Pre-Congress discussion, members have the right and duty within Party organizations and publications designated for this purpose to discuss all PCUSA policies and tactics, and to discuss the work of the Party, focusing on how to improve the Party.

Section 2

All comrades shall strive to attend all cell meetings. Members shall continually strive to expand their political knowledge and their understanding of Marxism-Leninism, to take part in the discussion of Party policy, to initiate activities, to work for the aims and policies of the Party, and to seek to win new members to its ranks.

They shall also read, circulate and help improve Party publications. All members shall circulate the press and make work with the press central to their mass activity.

It shall be the obligation of all Party members to struggle for the unity and other needs of the working class against all forms of national oppression, national chauvinism, white supremacy, discrimination and segregation, against all anti-working-class ideologies and practices that encompass bigotry, discrimination against oppressed nationalities, women, the LGBT+ community, and immigrants as well as against white chauvinism and antisemitism.

It shall be the duty of all Party members to fight for the full social, political and economic equality of the black people and promote the unity of black and white as essential to the advancement of their common interests.

It shall be the obligation of all Party members to fight for social, political and economic equality for Chicanos, Puerto Ricans, Native American peoples, Asian-Pacific peoples, other oppressed nationalities, and immigrants living in the United States.


The highest authority of the Party is the national Congress which elects a Central Committee, which then elects the Politburo. The Politburo elects its Secretaries, which constitutes the Secretariat to serve between congresses.

The Politburo and the Secretariat implement the Party’s Marxist-Leninist line according to the principle of organization of the PCUSA known as Democratic Centralism.

The Politburo confirms the activities of the organization. The Politburo shall oversee the work of all established Commissions. The Politburo is responsible for the publication of the theoretical journal of the PCUSA,The Communist.

A majority vote of the quorum of the Politburo (50% plus 1 vote) shall determine policy, approve statements made on behalf of the Party and approve expenditures between meetings.

The Central Committee is responsible for the operation of the Party between Congresses. Central Committee meetings will be held every six (6) months.

The Party and its day to day operations will be guided and directed by the Secretariat and the Politburo.


The General Secretary shall preside over national meetings.

The General Secretary shall carry out the will of the membership as determined by the process of democratic centralism.

The General Secretary shall in no case carry out unilateral actions without the approval of a majority of the Politburo.

It is the responsibility of the General Secretary, with the approval of the Politburo majority, to appoint an Editor and Editorial Board to oversee the publication of the organ of the Central Committee of the PCUSA known as The Worker.

The General Secretary, together with the Treasurer, will be responsible for, and keep a record of, all finances of the PCUSA.

The National Chair – In the temporary absence of the General Secretary, they shall act in the position as Temporary General Secretary. The National Chairperson will assist the Ideological Department in preparing Party propaganda and educational materials and will assist the General Secretary in fulfilling administrative tasks of the Party.

The National Chair will also be assigned to the boards of the Peoples’ School for Marxist-Leninist Studies (PSMLS) and New Outlook Publishers, and shall chair all meetings of the Central Committee and the Politburo in the absence of the General Secretary.

Should the General Secretary become incapacitated, the National Chair will act as General Secretary until the Central Committee of the PCUSA meets and elects a new General Secretary.

The Organizational Secretary shall be charged with the administration of the Organization Department of the PCUSA, and shall coordinate the work of the District Organizers of the Party. The Organizational Secretary will work with the Financial Secretary to prepare lists of active members and to guarantee that all member dues are current.

The Financial Secretary shall preside over periodic meetings of the Finance Department, and they shall prepare accounting statements for each meeting of the Central Committee. The Finance Department shall also be responsible for maintaining a roster of districts in good standing with the PCUSA, shall work with the Politburo on any special organizational projects requiring advanced financial planning such as travel, media, and national conferences. The Finance Department will prepare detailed reports of such expenditures in advance to present to the Central Committee for their consideration when instructed by the General Secretary. Any amount of expenditure over the amount of $400 shall require two signatures, that of the Treasurer of the PCUSA or their designee, and that of the General Secretary or their designee.

The Educational Secretary is responsible for the oversight and management of New Outlook Publishers, the Party’s publishing house, and will serve on its Board of Directors. The Educational Secretary will be responsible for all Party literature and distribution.

The Ideological Secretary will also serve of the Chair of the Peoples’ School for Marxist-Leninist Studies (PSMLS). The Ideological Secretary will be responsible for coordinating and organizing new members’ classes, and the development of Party pamphlets and ideological materials on the ‘burning questions’ affecting and impacting the working class, and the oppressed.

The International Secretary is responsible for the running of the International Department, and for all relations and communications with fraternal parties and workers’ organizations in the international communist movement.

The Recording Secretary is responsible for maintaining all the archives of the PCUSA, including but not limited to minutes of Central Committee meetings, meetings of the Politburo, and meetings of the Districts and Clubs. The Recording Secretary shall keep a copy of all public statements issued in the name of the PCUSA, including leaflets, press releases, and all public documents. The Recording Secretary shall maintain an electronic copy of all PCUSA minutes, and to make certain that printed copies of all meeting minutes are kept on file at the PCUSA National Office.


The National Office is authorized to appoint a District Organizer in geographical locations throughout the country where cells are being established. It is the responsibility of the District Organizer to work with the General Secretary and Organizing Secretary in utilizing local members and contacts to help establish an Organizing District that will coordinate actions with the approval of the Central Committee. The National Office can remove the District Organizer subject to the review of the Politburo for activities not in accordance with the aim of the Party of Communists USA.


Section 1 – Relationship of Cells to Districts

Local organizations shall be called Cells and shall be integrated into the proper geographic district as a basic unit of the Party.

Section 2 — Responsibilities of the District Organizers

It shall be the responsibility of each District Organizer to schedule district meetings. Meetings shall be scheduled for the convenience of members, with timely notice provided. Additional duties include proper and timely distribution of party press, literature, and other materials to each cell, and to active members. The District Organizers will coordinate this work with the National Office, and New Outlook Publishers. All cells and districts must maintain a supply of Party supported publications and literature, including but not limited to, ample copies of The WorkerLabor TodayThe Communist, a catalog of literature available from New Outlook Publishers, PCUSA/LYCUSA membership applications,

Section 3 — Democratic Rules of Order

All District meetings shall be governed by the process of democratic centralism. A simple majority of comrades present and in good standing shall be the vote required to call a question, limit or extend debate, or pass resolutions. A resolution that is passed or carried is recorded in the minutes of the Party District.


Amendments to this Constitution may be made by two-thirds (2/3) vote of the delegates present at a national congress. Amendments shall be proposed in writing at least three weeks before the congress, and will be communicated to all members.


Section 1

Initiation fees and dues shall be paid according to rates fixed by the National Congress. Between National Congresses, the Central Committee may revise the rates of initiation fees and dues by a two-thirds vote of the Central Committee.

Section 2

The income from dues and initiation fees shall be apportioned among the various subdivisions of the Party as determined by the National Congress.

Section 3

Special assessments may be levied by the National Congress or by a two-thirds vote of the Central Committee. All local or district assessments are prohibited except by special permission of the Central Committee.

ARTICLE XI— Authority

The PCUSA is not responsible for any political document, policy, book, article, or any other expression of political opinion except such as are issued by authority of the National Congresses and the regularly constituted leadership of the Party.

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