Single party saarland 2014
In November 2011, Lafontaine officially presented fellow politician Sahra Wagenknecht as his new girlfriend, who is 26 years his junior.Lafontaine rose to prominence locally as mayor of Saarbrücken and became more widely known as a critic of chancellor Helmut Schmidt's support for the NATO plan to deploy Pershing II missiles in Germany.
His carotid artery was slashed and he remained in a critical condition for several days.Following the merger with the Party of Democratic Socialism in June 2007, he became co-chairman of The Left.After being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2009, he announced his resignation from federal political functions in January 2010, citing health reasons.Moreover, he also unsuccessfully contested the Saarbrücken constituency, which he had previously represented from 1990 to 2002.Nevertheless, the result of the Left party in the Saarland was by far the best in any of the federal states in the West of Germany.On 11 March 1999, he resigned from all his official and party offices, claiming that "lack of cooperation" in the cabinet had become unbearable.
Until the formation of the Left Party he was known for his attacks against the Schroeder government in the tabloid Bild-Zeitung, which is generally considered conservative. After two weeks of speculation it was announced on 10 June that he would run as the lead candidate for The Left party (Die Linke), a coalition of the Labor and Social Justice Party (WASG), which was based in western Germany, and the Left Party.
Lafontaine was born in Saarlouis into a family of craftsmen.
His father, Hans Lafontaine, was a professional baker and was killed serving in World War II.
Lafontaine argued that any help given to Kohl would only lengthen his unavoidable demise.
After this strategy gave the SPD an unexpectedly clear victory at the polls in September 1998, he was appointed Federal Minister of Finance in the first government of Gerhard Schröder.
In May 2009, he declared that "Financial capitalism has failed. The workforce needs to have a far greater say in their companies than has been the case so far." An article by Lafontaine on Erich Honecker, state and party leader of the German Democratic Republic and a fellow Saarlander, in the magazine Der Spiegel was criticised as laudatory by many observers.