They have long been considered promising candidates. Now Janine Wissler and Susanne Hennig-Wellsow have announced that they will apply for the Federal Left presidency.

The head of the left-wing parliamentary group in the Hessian state parliament, Janine Wissler, and the Thuringian left-wing leader Susanne Hennig-Wellsow want to apply for the office of federal chairman of their party. On Friday, 39-year-old Wissler announced her candidacy for the first time in Wiesbaden. Wissler is already vice-federal chairman of the left. “I thought for a long time whether I would run for the party chairman at the upcoming party congress and came to the conclusion that I would,” she writes on Twitter.

In the afternoon, Hennig-Wellsow followed suit. “This is a big task that I will tackle with equal enthusiasm – preferably in female dual leadership,” explains Hennig-Wellsow. She was “very happy” with Wissler’s announcement.

The previous dual leadership of the left, Katja Kipping and Bernd Riexinger, had announced they would not run for the party chair again. The two had announced in recent weeks that the party congress in Erfurt would end at the top left of October after more than eight years.

The withdrawal of the top duo was no surprise

In the following debate, a dual leadership with two women had long been discussed: in addition to Wissler, the name Susanne Hennig-Wellsow was mentioned again and again. Like Kipping, neither can be attributed to the wing of the left fundamentalists or to the moderate reformers.

The withdrawal of the top duo Kipping / Riexinger came as no surprise. According to the articles of association, a party position may not be held for more than eight years. Kipping (42) and Riexinger (64) took over the party leadership in 2012.

The new top duo will lead the party into the next federal election, in which the left will also consider whether it is ready to form a government with a joint majority of the SPD, the left and the Greens.

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