V. I.   Lenin

Some Figures on the Elections in the Worker Curia in South Russia

Published: Proletary, No. 13, February 11, 1907. Published according to the Proletary text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1962, Moscow, Volume 12, pages 95-97.
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2004). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.README

Our appeal to all Russian Social-Democrats to organise the collection of exact figures on the elections in the worker curia has not been futile. We have already received replies to 93 of the questionnaires we distributed among t.he St. Petersburg comrades. These 93 questionnaires were distributed by districts as follows: Peterburgskaya Storona, 7; Vasilyevsky Ostrov, 22; Vyborg, 18; Moscow, 18; City, 28. We ask comrades to expedite the dispatch of the remaining forms to help make our information complete, particularly for the big factories. We shall then publish the full figures.

From the provinces we have the returns for six factories in Ekaterinoslav Gubernia. We give these in tabulated form to show the comrades what kind of information the Party needs and what conclusions we should draw from the experience of the first Party elections in the worker curia.

Name of
Party af-
filliation of
Number of votes cast for:
S.R. Non-
Esau works 350 1 S.D. Mensh. 130 112 15 3
Locomotive Repair Shop 2,700 2 S.D. Mensh. 800 650
Locomotive Depot 700 1 S.D. 230 230
Nail Factory 700 1 S.D. Bolsh. 250 250
Pipe-Rolling Works 850 1 S.D. Mensh. 200 195 5
Bryansk Rolling MIII 4,350 4 S.R. 1,100 300 800
Total, 6 factories 9,650 10 6 S.D.
4 S.R.
2,710 250 1,257 815 8

Of course, we do not know how typical these figures are, and to what extent the conclusions to be drawn from them can be applied to the whole of Ekaterinoslav Gubernia. In order to draw final conclusions we must obtain complete data.

For the time being there are two points we can mention. The percentage of workers taking part in the elections is not high. Evidently, Social-Democratic activity is not thorough enough and does not reach the masses in their entirety. On the whole, less than one-third of the total number of workers took part in the elections. The. lowest percentage is at the Tubing Works—200 out of 850, i. e., less than one-fourth. The highest is at the Esau Works: 130 out of 350, i.e., more than one-third.

The Socialist-Revolutionaries competed with us at two factories: Esau and Bryansk. At the latter, the Socialist-Revolutionaries defeated the Mensheviks! The biggest factory elected four Socialist-Revolutionary delegates.

Thus, the preliminary figures for the South (very incomplete, it is true) confirm the conclusion we drew about the North: the Socialist-Revolutionaries are beating the Mensheviks, for the edification of the opportunists, it might seem, or else to teach a lesson to people who with unpardonable thoughtlessness brush aside revolutionary bourgeois democracy and hanker after liberal-monarchist bourgeois democracy!

The Socialist-Revolutionaries account for 40 per cent, i.e., two-fifths, of the total number of delegates (10). But the number of votes cast for the Socialist-Revolutionaries was less than one-third of the total—815 out of 2,710. It is worth noting that, despite their victory at the biggest factory, the proportion of votes obtained by the Socialist-Revolutionaries was smaller than the proportion of delegates. This shows how groundless and unsupported were the assertions of St. Petersburg Socialist-Revolutionaries that their share of votes must have been larger than that indicated by their share of delegates. Such assertions must not be made without documentary statistical evidence of the number of votes cast at each factory.

We hope that comrades all over Russia will continue to collect information along the lines indicated, so that the Party as a whole may form a clear and definite idea of the results of its campaign, and learn to understand the causes of its relative failures.


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