Malu Dreyer

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Malu Dreyer
Dreyer in 2023
Minister-President of Rhineland-Palatinate
Assumed office
16 January 2013
DeputyEveline Lemke
Volker Wissing
Anne Spiegel
Katharina Binz
Preceded byKurt Beck
Leader of the
Social Democratic Party
In office
3 June 2019 – 6 December 2019
General SecretaryLars Klingbeil
Preceded byAndrea Nahles
Succeeded byNorbert Walter-Borjans
Saskia Esken
Deputy Leader of the
Social Democratic Party
In office
7 December 2017 – 6 December 2019
LeaderMartin Schulz
Andrea Nahles
Preceded byAydan Özoğuz
Succeeded byAnke Rehlinger
President of the Bundesrat
In office
1 November 2016 – 31 October 2017
First Vice PresidentStanislaw Tillich
Preceded byStanislaw Tillich
Succeeded byMichael Müller
Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Rhineland-Palatinate
In office
15 March 2002 – 15 January 2013
Preceded byFlorian Gerster
Succeeded byAlexander Schweitzer
Member of the
Landtag of Rhineland-Palatinate
for Trier
In office
18 May 2006 – 1 August 2016
Preceded byChristoph Grimm
Succeeded bySven Teuber
Personal details
Marie-Luise Dreyer

(1961-02-06) 6 February 1961 (age 62)
Neustadt an der Weinstraße, Rhineland-Palatinate, West Germany
Political partySocial Democratic Party (1995–)
SpouseKlaus Jensen
Alma materJohannes Gutenberg University Mainz

Marie-Luise "Malu" Dreyer[1] (born 6 February 1961) is a German politician of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) who has served as the 8th and current Minister President of Rhineland-Palatinate since 13 January 2013. She is the first woman to hold this office. She served a one-year-term as the President of the Bundesrat from 1 November 2016 – 2017, which made her the deputy to the President of Germany while in office. She was the second female President of the Bundesrat and the sixth woman holding one of the five highest federal offices in Germany.

Early life and education[edit]

Dreyer was born the second of three children of a principal and a teacher.[2] Following a year as an exchange student at Claremont High School in California in 1977,[3] and her final Abitur exams at the Käthe-Kollwitz-Gymnasium Neustadt in 1980, Dreyer started her English studies and Roman Catholic theology at the University of Mainz. The following year she switched majors to jurisprudence and graduated in both law degrees with the first Staatsexamen in 1987 and the second Staatsexamen three years later with an excellent academic record.[2]


From 1989, Dreyer worked at the University of Mainz as a research assistant to Professor Hans-Joachim Pflug.[4] In 1991 she received her appointment as a probationary judge, and later as a prosecutor in Bad Kreuznach.[3]

SPD politician since 1995[edit]

Dreyer joined the SPD in 1995 and was mayor of the city of Bad Kreuznach from 1995 to 1997. From 1997 she was head of department for social affairs, youth and housing in the state capital of Mainz.[5] Having served as State Minister of Social Affairs, Labor, Health and Demography since 2002, she was the designated successor of incumbent Minister-president Kurt Beck, who announced his upcoming resignation from the post on 28 September 2012.[6] She was officially elected on 16 January 2013.

As one of Rhineland-Palatinate's representatives at the Bundesrat, Dreyer serves on the Committee on Foreign Affairs and on the Committee on European Union Affairs.

In the negotiations to form a Grand Coalition of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU together with the Bavarian CSU) and the SPD following the 2013 federal elections, Dreyer was part of the SPD delegation in the working group on cultural and media affairs, led by Michael Kretschmer and Klaus Wowereit.

In the 2016 state elections, Dreyer managed to convert her high personal approval ratings into a 36.2% win against her opponent Julia Klöckner,[7] improving her party's 2011 result by half a percentage point.[8] In electing Dreyer, the electorate voted to keep the SPD in office for their sixth consecutive term.[9]

During her second term in office, Dreyer's government decided to sell the state's 82.5 percent stake in the loss-making Frankfurt–Hahn Airport in western Germany to Chinese conglomerate HNA Group.[10]

In late 2017, SPD members elected Dreyer to the party's national leadership for the first time as a vice chair.[11] In the negotiations to form a fourth coalition government under Merkel following the 2017 federal elections, she led the working group on health policy, alongside Hermann Gröhe and Georg Nüßlein.

Dreyer was nominated by her party as delegate to the Federal Convention for the purpose of electing the President of Germany in 2022.[12]

Political positions[edit]

Following the 2017 national elections, Dreyer warned against another grand coalition and favoured a minority government.[11]

Other activities[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Since 2004, Dreyer has been married to Klaus Jensen [de; fr], a fellow SPD politician and a former mayor of Trier, who had been widowed three years earlier.[19]

She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1994.[20] This inhibits her physical movement. She made her illness public in 2006, and, when travelling she now always takes her "Rolli" (wheelchair) along, for covering longer distances.[21]


  1. ^ "Malu Dreyer". Munzinger Biographie. Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  2. ^ a b "Malu Dreyer - Eine starke Frau wird Landesmutter". (in German). Archived from the original on 17 December 2012. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  3. ^ a b "Gesundheit für Kinder und Familien" (PDF). (in German). Retrieved 3 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Die Abgeordneten des Landtags Rheinland-Pfalz: 16. Wahlperiode 2011–2016". (in German). Archived from the original on 3 August 2014. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
  5. ^ "Malu Dreyer". Malu Dreyer. Retrieved 9 October 2022.
  6. ^ Spiegel Online, Hamburg, Germany (28 September 2012). "Beck hört als Ministerpräsident und SPD-Chef in Rheinland-Pfalz auf". Der Spiegel/Spiegel Online. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
  7. ^ What Germany's state election results mean for its politics The Economist blog, 14 March 2016.
  8. ^ Philip Oltermann (14 March 2016), German elections: the candidates who backed Merkel's refugee stance – and won The Guardian.
  9. ^ Kate Brady (13 March 2016), Rhineland-Palatinate plays it safe, re-electing SPD for sixth consecutive term Deutsche Welle.
  10. ^ Victoria Bryan (1 March 2017), German region decides to sell Hahn airport to China's HNA Reuters.
  11. ^ a b Emily Schultheis (5 January 2018), 8 key players in Germany's coalition talks Politico Europe.
  12. ^ 17th Federal Convention, 13 February 2022, List of Members Bundestag.
  13. ^ Board of Directors ZDF.
  14. ^ Senate, as of April 6, 2020 Max Planck Society.
  15. ^ Members Central Committee of German Catholics.
  16. ^ Board of TrusteesDeutsches Museum.
  17. ^ Members Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES).
  18. ^ Advisory Board Archived 18 November 2017 at the Wayback Machine Fritz Walter Foundation.
  19. ^ Dieter Lintz (2 July 2004). "Beck erster Gratulant". Volksfreund-Druckerei Nikolaus Koch GmbH, Trier. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
  20. ^ "Malu Dreyer zum 50.: Mit Leib und Seele Sozialpolitikerin". Rhein-Zeitung, retrieved 28 September 2012.
  21. ^ "Becks Erbin in Rheinland-Pfalz: Malu Dreyer trotzt ihrer Krankheit". RP Digital GmbH, Düsseldorf. 2 October 2012. Retrieved 21 November 2015.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by Minister-president of Rhineland-Palatinate
Succeeded by