Germany's opposition Left Party has nominated veteran Nazi hunter Beate Klarsfeld, who tracked down Klaus Barbie, as its candidate in next month's presidential election. Klarsfeld, aged 73, has no real chance of beating Joachim Gauck in the two-horse race. Gauck has been nominated by Chancellor Angela Merkel's ruling coalition together with two opposition parties. The appointment is to be made by an assembly of 1,240 public figures, including all the Bundestag. Klarsfeld and her husband, Serge, have devoted their lives to privately tracking down Nazis who took part in the Holocaust but returned to postwar life without being brought to justice, tipping off the authorities so they could be arrested. In Paris, Klarsfeld described the nomination by the Left Party national executive as "wonderful." The presidency, a largely ceremonial post, is vacant after Christian Wulff resigned because prosecutors were investigating whether he accepted favors as state premier from a wealthy businessman. Gauck, a former Lutheran pastor with a strongly anticommunist, pro-freedom message, is practically assured of election on the first ballot, with the opposition Social Democrats and Greens supporting him and only the Left publicly opposed to his election. The Klarsfelds' most celebrated success was to track down Klaus Barbie, a former Gestapo officer known as the "Butcher of Lyon," who was living in Bolivia in the 1970s under an alias.