Peter Gauweiler

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Peter Gauweiler.

Peter Gauweiler (born June 22, 1949 in Munich, Bavaria) is a German politician, and a member of Bavaria's Christian Social Union (CSU) in the German Bundestag, where he represents Munich South. Gauweiler is considered a Euro-sceptic and made a name with partly successful constitutional complaints against the euro bailout fund and the Lisbon Treaty.[1]

Political career[edit]

Gauweiler joined the CSU in 1968 and has been an elected politician since 1972, first in the Munich City Council, later in the Bavarian state parliament.[2] In 1987, during Gauweiler’s time as secretary of state in the State Interior Ministry, Bavaria put into effect some of the stiffest AIDS regulations ordered anywhere in the world, including mandatory blood tests for prostitutes, drug addicts, prison inmates, applicants for civil-service jobs and some foreigners seeking residence in Bavaria.[3] From 1990 to 1994, Gauweiler was Bavarian State Minister for Regional Development and Environment. Most notably during that time, he demanded that the Party of Democratic Socialism and the German Communist Party be outlawed after German reunification.[4]

Since 2006, Gauweiler has been a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Foreign cultural and educational policies of the German Bundestag. In 2009, he accompanied German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier on what was the first visit to Iraq by a German foreign minister in 22 years.[5] Along with fellow lawmakers Günter Gloser, Monika Grütters, Luc Jochimsen and Claudia Roth, Gauweiler traveled to Iran in 2010 to meet with Ali Larijani, Manouchehr Mottaki and others; the trip was heavily criticized by international human rights organizations.[6] In 2012, he argued that the German government's gold reserves held in the United States should be repatriated.[7]

In November 2013, Gauweiler was elected deputy chairman of the CSU.[8]

Euroscepticism[edit]

In 1992, Gauweiler described the Maastricht Treaty as a "totalitarian dream," while mocking its key component, a common currency by 1999, as "Esperanto money." [9] In 2008, he challenged the German ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon, claiming the treaty unconstitutional. He launched a similar challenge to the European Constitution in 2005, but after its failure the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany made no ruling and a presidential signature was never given.[10][11] In 2008, he challenged the Treaty of Lisbon before the constitutional court, saying that the proposed reforms of the EU would undermine the independence of the German Parliament and clash with the German Constitution. [12]

Gauweiler has also been among the most aggressive challengers of the European Central Bank rescue efforts during the Euro crisis at the Constitutional Court .[13] In 2011, together with a group of academics, he unsuccessfully asked the court to block the country’s participation in the bail-out packages for Greece and in the European Financial Stability Facility, the predecessor of the European Stability Mechanism.[14] In 2012, Gauweiler filed a complaint against the ESM and included opposition to a banking license for the bailout fund.[15] Gauweiler claimed that the ECB's bond-buying program threatened Germany with unlimited losses.[16] He managed to convince a majority of justices on the court's second senate that the ECB's program to save the European common currency was contrary to European Union law. The judges subsequently referred the case onward to the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg, a first for the German court.[17]

Legal practice[edit]

Gauweiler is a partner in the law firm Bub, Gauweiler & Partner in Munich. Among other high-profile cases, the firm represented Gauweiler’s friend[18] and onetime media mogul Leo Kirch in a multibillion-dollar lawsuit against Deutsche Bank.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nancy Waldmann (February 27, 2013), Dispute over Europe: “A Homeland is Not a Piece of Earth” Goethe Institute, Prague.
  2. ^ Nancy Waldmann (February 27, 2013), Dispute over Europe: “A Homeland is Not a Piece of Earth” Goethe Institute, Prague.
  3. ^ Serge Schmemann (July 12, 1987), A German Controversy: What To Do? Bavaria Has Some Strict Ideas New York Times.
  4. ^ John O. Koehler, Stasi - The Untold Story of the East German Secret Police New York Times.
  5. ^ Ralf Beste (February 17, 2009), Foreign Minister in Baghdad: Visit to Iraq Underscores Germany's Shift in Policy Spiegel Online.
  6. ^ Benjamin Weinthal (November 16, 2010), That Treasured German-Iranian Friendship Wall Street Journal.
  7. ^ Stephen Beard (November 16, 2012), Tracking down Germany's gold Deutsche Welle.
  8. ^ Peter Gauweiler: Vom Außenseiter zur CSU-Parteispitze Augsburger Allgemeine, November 13, 2013.
  9. ^ Josef Joffe (April 1, 1992), Is the National Symbol in Danger?: Europe, Apple Pie And the D-Mark International Herald Tribune.
  10. ^ No Success for Peter Gauweiler's applications against the ratification of the EU Constitution, Press Release No 35/2005 dated April 28, 2005. (via Law Web Saarbrücken), April 28, 2005.
  11. ^ "the tap: German Lisbon Ratification Also Uncertain". The-tap.blogspot.com. June 14, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  12. ^ Stephen Castle and Judy Dempsey (July 1, 2008), Pursuit of EU treaty 'pointless,' Kaczynski says International Herald Tribune.
  13. ^ Nicholas Kulish (September 26, 2012), Political Shifts in Bavaria, Land of Tradition, Could Have Wide Repercussions New York Times.
  14. ^ Karin Matussek (February 7, 2014), ECB’s ‘Whatever It Takes’ Questioned by Top German Court Bloomberg.
  15. ^ Michelle Martin (August 4, 2012), German politicians concerned about bigger role for ESM Reuters.
  16. ^ Graeme Wearden (September 10, 2012), Eurozone crisis live: Greece battles with troika over cuts - as it happened The Guardian.
  17. ^ Europe or Democracy? What German Court Ruling Means for the Euro Spiegel Online, February 10, 2014.
  18. ^ Hannes Hintermeier (November 14, 2012), Der Überbayer Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
  19. ^ David Crawford and Matthew Karnitschnig (August 22, 2009), Banker, Gadfly, Lawyer, Spy Wall Street Journal.

External links[edit]