Leading left-wing politicians have called on their troubled party to unite. “A party that appears divided from the outside will not be elected,” writes co-chair Janine Wissler in an article for the “Tagesspiegel”: “The task of the left is to be a clear opposition to the devastating traffic light policy. The voting potential is there. We have to activate it better again.” Many people have the impression that the left is too self-absorbed. “Intra-party disputes often overshadow the good substantive work that is being done in the left,” Wissler complained.

The outgoing left faction leader in the Bundestag, Dietmar Bartsch, also warned in the “Tagesspiegel”: “We have to concentrate on our core issues and stop self-preoccupation. Politics, politics and more politics – that has to be the motto.” Unfortunately, the left currently lacks unity. “Fighting parties are not elected. That’s a truism that we’re feeling with full force right now.” Bartsch also believes that a new basic program is necessary in the medium term. The current program is twelve years old. “Climate, migration, war: The world is different today than it was in 2011,” emphasized Bartsch. He wrote: “The left must unequivocally be there again for the people who are not on the sunny side of life.”

The Education Minister of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Simone Oldenburg, wrote in the newspaper about her party: “Unfortunately, disputes and quarrels are currently in the foreground. Personal vanity also plays too big a role. That has to come to an end.”

Direction dispute with Sahra Wagenknecht

Steffen Dittes, leader of the Left parliamentary group in the state parliament of Thuringia, criticized that the party is currently characterized by too much self-doubt. This limits their effectiveness on the ground. “The reason for this is that the Left Party neither cares about social problems nor is close to the people. This is certainly wrong, but it is part of a self-created narrative.”

Bartsch announced on Wednesday that he would not run again for parliamentary group chairmanship at the beginning of September. His co-chairman Amira Mohamed Ali had previously announced her resignation. The left is in crisis because of a directional dispute between the party leadership and the member of the Bundestag Sahra Wagenknecht.