V. I.   Lenin

Second Congress of the R.S.D.L.P.

July 17 (30)-August 10 (23), 1903


7. Draft Rules of the R.S.D.L.P.[1]

1. A Party member is one who accepts the Party’s programme and supports the Party both financially and by personal participation In one of its organisations.

2. The Party Congress is the supreme organ of the Party. Party congresses are summoned (if possible, not less than once in two years) by the Central Committee. The Central Committee is obliged to summon a congress at the demand of Party committees, or unions of committees, which jointly had one-third of the votes at the preceding congress, or at the demand of the Party Council. A congress is valid given representation of over one half of all (properly constituted) committees of the Party existing at the moment of the congress.

3. The following are entitled to representation at a congress: a) the Central Committee; b) the editorial board of the Central Organ; c) all local committees which do not belong to special unions; d) all unions of committees recognised by the Party; and e) the League Abroad. Each of the organisations enumerated has two deciding votes at a congress. New committees and unions of committees are entitled to be represented at a congress only if they have been endorsed not less than six months before the congress.

4. The Party Congress appoints the Central Committee, the editorial board of the Central Organ, and the Party Council.

5. The Central Committee co-ordinates and directs all the practical activities of the Party and administers the   Central Party Treasury, as well as all the general technical establishments of the Party. It examines conflicts that may arise between various organisations and institutions of the Party or within them.

6. The editorial board of the Central Organ gives ideological guidance to the Party by editing the Party’s Central Organ, the scientific organ, and pamphlets.

7. The Party Council is appointed by the congress from among members of the editorial board of the Central Organ and the Central Committee, and consists of five persons. The Council settles disputes and differences arising between the editorial board of the Central Organ and the Central Committee on questions of general organisation and tactics. The Party Council appoints a new Central Committee in the event of the arrest of all the members of the old committee.

8. New committees and unions of committees are endorsed by the Central Committee. Each committee, union, organisation, or group recognised by the Party has charge of affairs relating specifically and exclusively to its particular locality, district or national movement, or to the special function assigned to it, being bound, however, to obey the decisions of the Central Committee and the Central Organ and to make contributions to the Central Party Treasury in amounts determined by the Central Committee.

9. Any Party member and any person who has any contact with the Party is entitled to demand that any statements made by him should be transmitted in the original to the Central Committee, the Central Organ, or the Party Congress.

10. It is the duty of every Party organisation to afford both the Central Committee and the editorial board of the Central Organ every opportunity of becoming acquainted with all its activities and its entire composition.

11. All Party organisations and collegiate bodies decide their affairs by a simple majority vote and have the right of co-optation. A two-thirds majority vote is required for co-optation or expulsion of members.

12. It is the purpose of the League of Russian Revolutionary Social-Democracy Abroad to carry on propaganda and agitation abroad and also to assist the movement in Russia.   The League enjoys all the rights of committees, with the sole exception that it renders assistance to the movement in Russia only through persons or groups specially appointed for the purpose by the Central Committee.

Written in June-early July 1903 Published according to the text of the Minutes
First published in Geneva in 1904 in the Minutes of the Second Regular Congress of the R.S.D.L.P.



[1] Draft Rules of the R.S.D.L.P. proposed by Lenin at the Second Congress of the Party have not been preserved. The present volume gives the original draft Rules included by the Protocol Committee of the Second Congress in the appendices to the Full Text of the Minutes of the Second Regular Congress of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party, published in Geneva in 1904. The Protocol Committee of the Second Party Congress erroneously termed Lenin’s original draft Rules, which it included in appendix XI to the Full Text of the Minutes, the draft of the organisational rules of the R.S.D.L.P. put forward by Lenin at the Congress (see V. I: Lenin, One Step Forward, Two Steps Back, item G, The Party Rules. Comrade Martov’s Draft).

  6. Draft Resolution on the Publication of a Periodical for Members of Religious Sects | 8. Draft Resolutions Not Submitted to the Congress  

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