Membership criteria

Below are the primary considerations made by Red Caucus members when evaluating whether to admit a new person.

  • Agreement with our Points of Unity
  • Being an active member of Portland DSA, preferably currently engaged in chapter organizing work of some kind
  • A commitment to working within DSA as the “Big Tent” socialist organization it is. Red Caucus has no illusions about dogmatically transforming DSA into something it isn’t, e.g. an exclusively revolutionary Marxist organization.
  • Whether an existing caucus member or members know you personally and can vouch for your politics and social conduct. Here is the Portland DSA Community Conduct Policy.

Membership process

There is a form interested people can fill out at if they would like to apply for membership, again with regards to the criteria above. Before being accepted as a new member all potential candidates must first be nominated by an existing member and then be voted in by either a 9/10 vote of all caucus members or by a unanimous vote of the three person caucus leadership, aka the local committee.If you have any questions you can email them to

Why does the Red Caucus have a closed membership?

The Red Caucus is explicitly a political caucus, not an ideological social club. This is to say that our ultimate aim and reason for existing is to advance a shared political vision and strategy based on the priorities outlined in our points of unity, both within and outside of DSA. While we have no desire to be exclusive merely for its own sake and encourage principled disagreement and productive debate on tactics, strategy and priorities both among our members and outside the caucus with non-members, much of our mutual experience has been that effective and sustained commitment to a shared political goal requires relationships built on common understanding and trust, and that to be successful these kinds of relationships require we be intentional about who we choose to form them with. This is the reason there is an admission process for allowing new people to join, so current members can better evaluate and ensure that a new person’s admission into the caucus will advance rather than inhibit that shared goal.

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