Obama and ‘The New Party’
By Frank Mazzaglia/Local columnist
MetroWest Daily News
Posted Jul 08, 2012

For all of its political success and continuing growth, the
conservative Tea Party is still paying a heavy price with the media.
Some polls show that 43 percent of the public holds an unfavorable
view of the Tea Party. A Sunday New York Times book review just last
November by historian Kevin Boyle compared Tea Party activists,
particularly religious ones, to the Ku Klux Klan and Nazis. Somehow,
that got past the editors without comment.

Less acknowledged is The New Party, founded in 1992 by Daniel Cantor
and Joel Rogers which proudly proclaimed its mission to push the
Democratic Party further to the left by electing leftist or socialist
candidates. From the beginning, the Chicago Chapter of The New Party
was composed of assorted Socialists, Communists, Marxists, and
Trotskyites. Operating under the quaintly named “Committees of
Correspondence,” the Chicago Chapter of The New Party supported
candidate Barack Obama, one of its own members, in the race for a
vacant seat in the Illinois state senate. Obama’s victory was
bolstered by left leaning Chicago Democrats as well as ACORN, the
Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

When conservatives became aware of Obama’s membership in The New
Party, the mainstream media largely ignored the story. In October,
2008, when National Review Online insisted that Barack Obama had
indeed been a member of The New Party, the Obama campaign called the
charges a “crack-pot smear.” Obama’s Fight the Smears website claimed
that he had never been a member of The New Party and had never
solicited its endorsement. However, documentary evidence from ACORN
files established beyond a reasonable doubt that Obama did solicit
endorsement and signed a contract promising to support The New Party
policies. A Stanley Kurtz article in June’s National Review even
included Minutes from the January 11, 1996 public meeting of Chicago’s
New Party which stated, “Barack Obama, candidate for the State Senate
in the 13th Legislative District, gave a statement to the membership
and answered questions. He signed the ‘Candidate Contract’ and
requested an endorsement from The New Party. He also joined The New

The New Party News even ran a picture of state senatorial candidate
Barack Obama with the excerpt, “About 50 activists attended the
Chicago New Party membership meeting in July… The political entourage
included …Barack Obama, chief of staff for State Sen. Alice Palmer.
Obama is running for Palmer’s vacant seat.”

Well, you might ask yourself, “So, what?” However, when MetroWest
Democrats, arguably among the smartest in the state, do their
research, they may find The New Party’s Statement of Principles
disturbing. The New Party’s Principles dismiss the current political
system as a “sewer of privilege and exclusion” and condemns the
Democratic Party as “dominated by business, business backed
candidates, or upper middle class liberal elites searching for a
candidate acceptable to business.” The Statement of Principles demands
a guaranteed minimum income for all adults, and a universal social
wage, defined as a cradle to grave state provision for health care,
child care, and education which is far left of the American Democratic
Party’s platform. It’s the socialistic model that got Europe into
trouble and makes no attempt at finding a way to pay for these

OK, sure, but it’s 2012, not 2008. Things change. People change. Ideas
change. It’s also true that the things we worry most about will
probably never happen. Yet, conservatives continue to express
legitimate worry about increasing governmental control over the
private sector and the collateral costs associated with radical social
engineering. Still, loyal Democrats can be expected to be loyal.
That’s why the real focus is on Independent voters.

Rumors of Obama’s socialism continue to emerge. The rumors, of course,
are firmly and even laughingly denied. But, you know, given Obama’s
history and subsequent denial of involvement with The New Party, even
the staunchest of liberal Democrats should acknowledge that there is
plenty of room for an honest doubt.