The Island New Democrats, is a social democratic, party as they are currently known, is a branch of the Canadian New Democratic Party on Prince Edward Island.
The NDP's predecessor, the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation ran candidates in the provincial elections of 1943, 1947 and 1951 without any success and the party disappeared. Among the CCF's candidates was Hilda Ramsay running in 3rd Prince in 1951, the first woman ever to run in a PEI provincial election.
The PEI NDP was founded by Aquinas Ryan, a school principal from Morell in Kings County. In 1974, the NDP contested their first provincial election on the island and got 5.9% of the vote, but due to internal bickering, the party fell in the polls.
In the 1993 election, under the leadership of Larry Duschene, the party rose to 5.4%. Dr Herb Dickieson took over as leader, and changed the name of the party from the PEI NDP, to the Island New Democrats. In the 1996 election, the party captured 7.8% of the vote, and elected Dr. Dickieson to the house. He was the first member of a third party to ever win a seat to the PEI House of Assembly. Dr. Dickieson narrowly lost his seat in the 2000 election despite the party's overall popular vote rising to 8.4%
The Island New Democrats did not do as well in the 2003 general election. Despite this, most polls showed that party leader Gary Robichaud won all the debates. While the party ran a good campaign, it was poorly organised on the ground and lost its base of support, only capturing 3% of the popular vote.