Sahra Wagenknecht doesn't want to make a mistake: The prominent left-wing politician will only answer the hotly debated question of whether she will found her own party in the next few months. "I assume that the decisions will be made within the next nine months. It must be clear by the end of the year how things will continue," said the 53-year-old to the news portal "ZDFheute.de". The left tip sharply criticized Wagenknecht's statements.
No "one woman show"
In the interview, Wagenknecht gave the reasons for her cautious approach: "The expectation that one could - even if one had decided - just launch such a party from one week to the next, that would be doomed to failure." Wagenknecht points to the necessary structures, legal considerations and the fact that she needs enough supporters. A new project can only work with a really reliable team that takes over many of the things for which she simply has no talent. "As a one-woman show, I can't do that."
Strangers with political craft
Wagenknecht is more of an intellectual lone warrior who likes to write books. According to her own statements, she finds it difficult to do the actual political work. "Controlling the apparatus" is foreign to her, she once said - for example leading party friends, maintaining networks, drumming for support in roundtables.
"I can also imagine a perspective as a writer and publicist," she says in the interview. "But I would also like to make a difference politically, I'll say that honestly." But before deciding on "such a project", Wagenknecht wants to be sure that it can work. "I don't want to end my political career with a flop."
Already failed once with "Get up".
She still remembers the failed attempt to set up a cross-party leftist rally. The "Get Up" project launched in 2018 did not catch fire.
"New parties always run the risk that not only smart and honestly committed people want to take part, but also difficult people." With "Getting Up" she experienced that something like this could cause a project to fail.
No future in the Left Party
The politician sees no future for herself in the Left Party itself. At the beginning of March, Wagenknecht made it clear that she no longer wanted to run for the party for the Bundestag. After the end of this legislative period in 2025, there should either be an end to politics "or something new will arise politically".
She has been at odds with her party for years, but they have also been at odds with her. On the one hand, Wagenknecht is something like the prominent figurehead of the left and is invited to every talk show, on the other hand, she repeatedly brushes against the grain and the official course of the party on controversial topics: she spoke out against open borders in refugee policy, she said She was skeptical about vaccination when it came to Corona and in her book "The Self-Righteous" she settled accounts with the part of her party that was committed to gender and climate change.
The top of the left criticized Wagenknecht's actions via Twitter on Saturday. In the face of war, the climate crisis, inflation and strikes, the party is more in demand than ever. "Announcing that you want to decide on the formation of a competing party in the course of the next few months is irresponsible," said Linke chairmen Janine Wissler and Martin Schirdewan after a tweet from the party press office. "It offends the thousands of members who work locally for DIE LINKE and its goals. We call on everyone to reject efforts to divide, to defend DIE LINKE as a plural socialist party and to develop it further."
Offers from the AfD
Wagenknecht also caused offense when it came to Russia and Ukraine, for example when she accused the federal government of an economic war against Russia - which corresponds one to one to the choice of words by AfD boss Tino Chrupalla. Most recently, together with Alice Schwarzer, she had campaigned for negotiations and compromises "on both sides" with a "Manifesto for Peace" and mobilized thousands in Berlin at a large demonstration. Wagenknecht received an invitation from Thuringia's AfD boss Björn Höcke to join the AfD.