Saxony Elects: Meet the candidates face-to-face


On 1 September 2019, the Free State of Saxony elects a new state legislature for the five-year parliamentary period of 2019-24. All German citizens registered as residents of Saxony for at least three months are eligible to vote. “And why should I care about this election,” you may ask yourself (if you have been living under a rock for the past year).

This state legislature election is unlike any other. The results of the City Council and EU parliamentary elections back in May showed that Leipzig is a red-and-green spot in a sea of blue. Leipzig is an international, culturally rich city, situated in the northeast of a state where a large chunk of the population supports the far-right Alternativ für Deutschland (AfD).

In fact, the AfD is polling right at the top, alongside Angela Merkel’s party.

Saxony Elects
Chemnitz, formerly Karl-Marx-Stadt, site of recent extreme right-wing protests and counter-demonstrations. (Photo courtesy of Patrick Bauer)

Some of the latest polls show the AfD as nabbing 26 percent of Saxony’s voters, equal to Merkel’s CDU (Christian Democrats). The CDU is the current incumbent governing party, and if they receive 26 percent of votes on 1 September, they will have lost a quarter of their votes compared to the 2014 elections. In contrast, the same percentage means the AfD will have nearly tripled theirs.

Also Saxony-wide, the leftist Die Linke is polling at a distant third, with about 15 percent of votes. The Greens come in fourth with 12 percent. The latter may end up in the single digits, along with the SPD.

Were these poll results to hold, the AfD, a climate-change denying, anti-immigrant, ultra-conservative party, could become the largest party group in the Saxony legislature.

How will the other parties deal with this possible reality? Are they willing to enter into a coalition with the AfD? How will they contribute to solving the underlying issues attracting so many voters in Saxony to a far-right party?

Candidates from all democratic political parties hoping to represent Leipzig in the state legislature in Dresden will answer these and many other questions at our panel discussion “Saxony Elects” at 7 PM on 12 August, at Basislager Coworking.

Moderated by Dr. Harald Köpping-Athanasopoulos from our event partners at ARBEIT UND LEBEN Sachsen, the forum will feature candidates from the CDU, SPD, Greens, Die Linke, FDP, and Freie Wähler. The candidates will discuss several topics of great importance to Leipzig and Saxony, with the central theme being internationalization and openness.

The historic "Spoon Family" sign at Feinkost in Leipzig.
The historic “Spoon Family” sign at Feinkost in Leipzig. Public domain photo

For instance, how does one make Leipzig and Saxony places that attract young talent and investment without losing them to bigger German and European cities? In relation to this, the moderator will probe the candidates regarding their plans to help make Leipzig a more diverse and global city.

Do you have questions of your own? If you come to the “Saxony Elects” panel discussion, you may have the chance to ask them in person, having candidates address the topics that matter most to you – especially if it helps you decide which box to tick come September 1st.

Entry is free of charge and open to all, as long as space permits. The language of the panel discussion will be German. However, you may ask questions in English during the Q&A session, should you prefer.

Saxony elects
Public domain photo

Saxony Elects / Sachsen Wählt

Hosted by The Leipzig Glocal and ARBEIT UND LEBEN Sachsen (KAUSA-Servicestelle Leipzig)
Monday, 12 August 2019, 7 PM – 9 PM

Tickets by Eventbrite (FREE) | Facebook event

@ Basislager Coworking Leipzig
Peterssteinweg 14, 04107 Leipzig, Germany

A political scientist who follows global events with pious devotion. A Venezuelan by virtue of being born in that interesting tropical place, but who has lived and studied in several places around the world. He will write some analysis on important global issues, especially if they have an impact on Germany or Leipzig.

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