Patrick Walder becomes the new president of SVP Zurich


Christoph Blocher spoke a word of power and asked the leadership of the SVP party in Zurich, after the electoral defeat, to resign. Now he also decided who should lead the cantonal party temporarily: the only 31-year-old council, Patrick Walder.

Patrick Walder (31) is the name of the man who must revive the SVP of Zurich after the electoral defeat a week ago and lead to federal elections in October. At a late-night press conference, President Konrad Langhart (55) presented his successor. He should preside over the party temporarily until next fall, possibly until the spring 2020 ordinary elections.

First vice president on the side of young politician Walder must veteran SVP and former National Council Toni Bortoluzzi (72). Cantonal Councilor Elisabeth Pflugshaupt is proposed as the second vice president, as third vice president – a position that has not yet existed – Cantonal Orlando Wyss. The delegates' meeting should approve the election of the interim leadership tomorrow.

«I have the strength to advance the party»

Walder is an administrator and for 13 years in the city council of Dübendorf ZH. He says he is "already eternal" in SVP and therefore knows the party very well, he says. At just 31, he had "the strength to take the party forward."

Walder still does not know how he wants to do just that. A strategy must now be developed within the next two weeks, says the Chosen. But you do not have to change much, he believes. Because a good election campaign is always "a matter of time".

Comeback to Bortoluzzi

Toni Bortoluzzi, the new deputy, is a veteran of the SVP in Zurich: from 1982 to 1998 he was a member of the board of Affoltern am Albis ZH, since 1986 he chaired the executive branch. From 1984 to 1991, he politicized in the Cantonal Parliament of Zurich.

In 1991, he made the leap to the National Council, where he stood out by 2015, especially as health and social policy. In 2014, he caused outrage when he described gays and lesbians as "wrong" and unnatural.

Bortoluzzi told the press conference that he spontaneously and "willingly" compromised himself when he was invited to serve as temporary vice president.

Blocher spoke power word

The SVP party leadership had last week, at the request of former Federal Councilor Christoph Blocher, to take off the hat after the party took over in cantonal elections with the massive loss of seats. Blocher also chaired the search committee for a new party leadership.

Walder does not want to speculate why he was chosen by SVP Doyen. "You should ask him that." He certainly was not the one who stood in the foreground, but he'd been working hard for the party for years.


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