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In February 1922, twenty-two Russian Communist Party members, led by former Worker Oppositionist Alexander Shliapnikov, appealed to the Communist International (Comintern) to "heal the rift" they thought had emerged in the Russian Communist Party. They complained that party leaders had suppressed dissent among Communists of proletarian origins. They protested the suppression of participatory democracy within trade unions and the trend toward unilateral decision-making by the "party and trade union bureaucracy." Russian party leaders condemned their appeal and undertook to expel key figures from the Twenty-Two from the party at the Eleventh Party Congress in March 1922. Debates at the congress and political maneuvering behind the scenes reveal much about an important moment in the transition from Leninist to Stalinist party politics in Soviet Russia.