Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer

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Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer
Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer 22-01-2015.jpg
Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer in 2015
Minister-President of Saarland
Assumed office
10 August 2011
Preceded by Peter Müller
Member of the of Saarland Regional Parliament
Assumed office
September 1999
Personal details
Born (1962-08-09) 9 August 1962 (age 53)
Völklingen, Germany
Nationality German
Political party CDU
Alma mater Saarland University
University of Trier
Religion Roman Catholic

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (born 9 August 1962 in Völklingen)[1] is a German politician of the CDU. Since 10 August 2011, she is the current Minister-President of the Saarland,[2] succeeding Peter Müller. In 1998, she was a member of the Bundestag, the German federal parliament.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Kramp-Karrenbauer is from a conservative Catholic family. Between 1984 and 1990 she studied political science and law at University of Trier and Saarbrücken. Between 1991 and 1998 she was a policy officer for CDU Saarland.

Political career[edit]

Between 2000 and 2004, Kramp-Karrenbauer served as State Minister on Internal Affairs in the government of Minister-President Peter Müller; she was the first woman to hold that office in Germany.[3]

In the negotiations to form a coalition government following the 2009 federal elections, Kramp-Karrenbauer was part of the CDU/CSU delegation in the working group on education and research policy, led by Annette Schavan and Andreas Pinkwart.

Minister-President of Saarland, 2011-present[edit]

In January 2011, Kramp-Karrenbauer was named as successor to Müller, who went on to become a judge at the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany.[4]

In January 2012, Kramp-Karrenbauer ended a coalition that included the liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP) and blamed the party for “dismantling itself.”[5] She said that her three-party coalition – including the Greens as well as the FDP and her own CDU – had lost the necessary “trust, stability and capacity to act” with the liberals. Under Kramp-Karrenbauer’s leadership, the CDU won the state election shortly after, in what was widely regarded the first electoral test of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s crisis-fighting policy since the beginning of the European debt crisis;[6] meanwhile, the FDP was ejected from the state parliament after taking just 1.2 percent.[7]

Between 2011 and 2014, Kramp-Karrenbauer also served as Comissioner of the Federal Republic of Germany for Cultural Affairs under the Treaty on Franco-German Cooperation. She continues to be a member of the German-French Friendship Group set up by the German Bundesrat and the French Senate.

In the negotiations to form a so-called Grand Coalition (Große Koalition) following the 2013 federal elections, Kramp-Karrenbauer was part of the CDU/CSU delegation’ leadership team.

Political positions[edit]

When the Mayor of Hamburg Olaf Scholz submitted a motion for a mandatory women's quota for supervisory boards to the Bundesrat in 2012, Kramp-Karrenbauer joined the state governments controlled by the Social Democrats and voted in favor of the draft legislation; in doing so, she supported an initiative opposed by Chancellor Angela Merkel and state governments controlled by the CDU.[8]

Amid her party’s campaign for the 2013 federal elections, Kramp-Karrenbauer suggested Germany return to a top income tax rate above 50 percent, setting off a fierce debate within her party. In her view, Chancellor Angela Merkel's predecessor Gerhard Schröder had gone too far by reducing the top rate to 42 percent from 53 percent in the 1990s.[9] In May 2014, she was among leading members of Merkel’s CDU who called for reductions to offset the fiscal drag – the automatic increases in the tax take that occur as inflation and income growth push wage-earners into higher tax brackets.[10]

When the Federal Constitutional Court ruled in favor of tax equality to same-sex couples in 2013, Kramp-Karrenbauer voiced her concerns about also granting full adoption rights for same-sex couples."[11] In 2015, she caused a public controversy by arguing that "if we open up [the definition of marriage] to become a long-term responsible partnership between two adults, then other demands can't be ruled out, such as a marriage between close relatives or between more than two people."

Other activities[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Kramp-Karrenbauer is married to a mining engineer and has three children.[12] An avid reader and self-described AC/DC fan,[13] she speaks French and continues to take lessons to improve her command of the language.[14]


External links[edit]

Media related to Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer at Wikimedia Commons