The New Party was a political organization founded in 1992 by Daniel Cantor and Joel Rogers, with the objective of electing leftist or socialist individuals to public office in several states; the goal was to move the Democratic Party further to the left, with the ultimate objective of creating a major third party whose platform is Marxism.
Daniel Cantor, a former staffer with Jesse Jackson during his 1988 presidential campaign, and sociology/law professor Joel Rogers from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) created the New party, drawing many members from the Democratic Socialists of America and the civil organization group ACORN; the chapter in Chicago included former Maoists, Trotskyists, and Communist Party USA members who had gathered together under the group name "Committees of Correspondence". Among their most prominent members was Barack Obama, first picked to succeed Illinois state senator Alice Palmer while in the home of Weather Underground terrorist William Ayers in 1995.
"Electoral fusion" was encouraged by the New Party in the states where it was legal to do so (Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Mississippi, New York, South Carolina, Vermont); this act consisted of "a method of voting that allows minor parties to have their own ballot line with which they can either endorse their own candidates or endorse the candidates of other parties" . Usually, the candidate so endorsed was a Democrat, and occupying more than one ballot line during the vote.
In addition to Barack Obama, the New Party has attracted several well-known people involved with socialism, communism, or related anarchy, among them:
- Manning Marable, a founder of DSA.
- Elaine Bernard, labour academic, associated with DSA.
- Author and activist Noam Chomsky
- Author and activist Gloria Steinem
- Barbara Ehrenreich, author, activist, DSA leader, a founder of Progressives for Obama
- Bill Fletcher, Maoist, associated with DSA, and a founder of Progressives for Obama
- Carl Davidson, former Students for a Democratic Society member and Progressives for Obama webmaster.
- Maude Hurd, associate of Boston chapter of DSA and ACORN president.
- Frances Fox Piven, senior DSA member, endorsed the Progressives for Obama; heavily involved in ACORN's conception and organization.
- Raphael Pizzaro, labour activist in New York City and involved in DSA; was a member of the Communist Party of America.
- Cornel West, current advisor to Obama's campaign; active DSA member.
- Dr. Quentin Young, prominent DSA member, friend of Obama; attended the meeting in the home of William Ayers which introduced Obama in 1995. 
In 1996 three New Party members were successfully voted into office, all in Chicago:
- Barack Obama (13th State Senate District)
- Danny Davis (7th Congressional District)
- Patricia Martin (Judge, 7th Subcircuit Court) 
The New Party as an organization could not gain the influence it needed to continue to operate. In 1997 the United States Supreme Court ruled that the freedom of association clause of the First Amendment did not protect electoral fusion, further reducing NP's power; it was defunct by 1998, with its former members joining or creating similar political parties.
Obama's involvment in the New Party
Obama's campaign staff has consistently maintain that Obama was never a part of a socialist political party in general, the New Party in particular. Carl Davidson, an associate of Obama and former member of the New Party, stated:
- "The New Party in Chicago was never a socialist party. DSA in Chicago had little to do with it in any practical way. It was a pragmatic party of ’small d democracy’ mainly promoting economic reforms like the living wage and testing the fusion tactic, common in many countries but only operational in New York in the US. The main trend within it was ACORN, an Alinskyist outfit, which is hardly Marxist. Most socialist left groups either ignored it or opposed it, even if a few of their members took part in it. That’s the truth of the matter." 
Davidson's statement is refuted by Illinois state election records and the excerpts and photographs from the New Party News. A pro-New Party excert by Bruce Bentley stated:
- "About 50 activists attended the Chicago New Party membership meeting in July...The political entourage included Alderman Michael Chandler, William Delgado, chief of staff for State Rep Miguel del Valle, and spokespersons for State Sen. Alice Palmer, Sonya Sanchez, chief of staff for State Sen. Jesse Garcia, who is running for State Rep in Garcia's District; and Barack Obama, chief of staff for State Sen. Alice Palmer. Obama is running for Palmer's vacant seat." 
Bentley had also stated in 1995 that Carl Davidson himself was a member of the Committees of Correspondence (CoC):
- "On January 27th approximately 45 people attended the Chicago DSA and Chicago CoC organized public form at the ACTWU hall on Ashland Ave... Chicago DSA was represented by Co-Chair, Kurt Anderson and Political Education Officer, Bob Roman. CoC was represented by Carl Davidson, who is a member of CoC's National Coordinating Committee and Ronelle Mustin, an activist from the 22nd ward. The event was chaired by Sandi Patrinos, chair of Chicago CoC..."