The German Bundestag plans to disband the Left Party faction in early December.
The withdrawal of Sara Wagenknecht and her eight associates from the party led to a quantitative reduction in the ratio of mandates. As a result, it turned out that the faction of the Left Party did not have enough members to remain in the parliament. On November 14, at a meeting of the faction, a decision was made to dissolve it on December 6, a little less than two years before the official end of the election period.
In order to preserve the faction, it is necessary that at least 37 deputies remain in the Bundestag. However, after Sara Wagenknecht’s associates announced that she was leaving the party, this is not possible. After the faction’s dissolution, more than 100 employees of the Bundestag will lose their jobs.
It is expected that now two parliamentary groups will be formed: 28 deputies of the Left Party and Sarah Wagenknecht with her associates. The head of the faction Ditmar Barch said that the relevant work should be completed as soon as possible. Parliamentary groups will have less authority and will receive less financial support from the state budget. A decision of the Bundestag is necessary to start the functioning of the groups.
The dissolution of the faction will be a turning point for the Left Party. Its faction was formed in 2005 from two former left parties – the Labor and Social Justice Electoral Initiative and the Party of Democratic Socialism. In 2007, the parties united. Now a group led by Sarah Wagenknecht broke away from Levoy. The Sara Wagenknecht Union, which appeared after that, collects money for the registration of a new party.
The dissolution of a faction of one party before the end of the election period is an unprecedented case in the history of the Bundestag. Similar processes occur only after losing an election. The final liquidation of the faction may last several years, since numerous contracts must be terminated.
According to information from the Bundestag, the faction of the Left Party in 2022 received about 11.5 million euros of state support. About 9.3 million was spent on salaries of employees and deputies. Some of the 108 employees are expected to find new jobs in both parliamentary groups.