German Leftists Turn Against Open Borders

A German leftist movement has turned against the country's open border policies, with its leader declaring that welfare should be given to the poor instead of newly-arrived migrants.

A faction of the German Die Linke ("The Left") Party is launching the Aufstehen ("Stand up") movement to put pressure on other leftist groups to adopt tougher migration policies.

The movement is led by politician Sahra Wagenknecht, who believes German leftists are losing because public opinion is turning against open borders.

According to the French-speaking Tribune de Geneve:

"A border open to all is naive. This is not an especially leftist policy," she insists.

The billions spent by the government to welcome asylum seekers in 2015 "could have helped many more needy people in Germany," she said.

"More economic migrants mean more competition for jobs in the low wage sector. The number of social housing is also not unlimited," she added.

Presumably Wagenknecht and her supporters feel that the only way for them to stop right-leaning politicians is to take away their political monopoly on stronger border enforcement, which is resonating with the general electorate.

That said, the Tribune de Geneve described Wagenknecht as an "elitist" who makes rounds in the media, and as such she may have a credibility problem given the anti-establishment sentiment brewing in Germany that's not entirely dependent on immigration issues.

But her opponents on the left have even greater issues, particularly those among the Social Democrats who've been sliding in popularity ever since Merkel's "grand coalition" was re-elected.

(Photo: Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

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