Stephan Weil

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Stephan Weil
Weil, Stephan-8456.jpg
Stephan Weil
Lower Saxony
Minister President of Lower Saxony
Assumed office
19 February 2013
Preceded by David McAllister
Mayor of Hanover
In office
1 November 2006 – 19 February 2013
Preceded by Herbert Schmalstieg
Succeeded by Stefan Schostok
Chairman of the SPD of Lower Saxony
Assumed office
20 January 2012
Preceded by Olaf Lies
Member of the Landtag of Lower Saxony
Assumed office
19 February 2013
Preceded by Gisela Konrath
Constituency Hannover-Buchholz
President of the Bundesrat
In office
1 November 2013 – 31 October 2014
Preceded by Winfried Kretschmann
Succeeded by Volker Bouffier
Personal details
Born (1958-12-15) 15 December 1958 (age 58)
Hamburg, West Germany
Political party Social Democratic Party of Germany
Spouse(s) Rosemarie Kerkow-Weil (1987-)
Children 1
Occupation Lawyer

Stephan Weil (born 15 December 1958) is a German politician and the leader of the Social Democratic Party in Lower Saxony. On 20 January 2013, the SPD and the Green party won the 2013 Lower Saxony state election by one seat.[1] On 19 February 2013, he was elected Minister President of Lower Saxony with the votes of SPD and Alliance '90/The Greens.[2] He was President of the German Bundesrat from November 2013 to October 2014.[needs update]

Early life and education[edit]

Weil has lived in Hanover since 1965, where he completed the abitur at the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gymnasium. After his community service in 1978 he began a law degree in Göttingen, which he finished with his first state examination in 1983.[3] He then worked as a lawyer in Hanover, and later a public prosecutor and judge in the Lower Saxony ministry of justice. In 1994, Weil became a member of the ministerial council of Lower Saxony.

Political career[edit]

In his early years, Weil served as chairman of the SPD Jusos in Hanover. From 1997 until late October 2006 he held the office of the city treasurer.

Mayor of Hannover, 2006–2013[edit]

In May 2006 he was chosen as the SPD candidate for the Hanover mayoral election on 10 September 2006 against the CDU politician Dirk Topeffer and Ingrid Wagemann of Alliance '90/The Greens. He won an absolute majority in the first round. He succeeded Herbert Schmalstieg, the mayor of Hanover for 34 years on 1 November 2006. Weil held the office for 7 years, up to 2013 state election. Due to legal restrictions, Weil was automatically removed from the office of mayor when he became Prime Minister of Lower Saxony on 19 February 2013.[4]

From 29 January 2008 to 2011, Weil monthly answered questions from citizens in the TV program Warum Herr Weil (Why Mr. Weil) which airs every third Tuesday every month on HR Fernsehen.

On September 18, 2011 Weil announced that he would apply for the top candidate of the SPD for the 2013 state election in Lower Saxony. He was elected as the top candidate with 53.3% of votes on 27 September 2011.[5] On 20 January 2012 he was voted as the chairman of SPD Lower Saxony.[6] In March, Weil was unanimously chosen as the SPD direct candidate for the Hanover-Buchholz constituency.[7] On the state convention in Hameln, Weil placed first with 98.95%.

Minister-President of Lower Saxony, 2013–present[edit]

Just weeks before the state elections, opinion polls indicated that Weil, with the help of the Greens, would easily defeat incumbent Minister-President David McAllister.[8] He eventually won the elections by a wafer-thin majority, resulting in his center-left coalition having a narrow majority of just one vote in the state parliament. At the time, his victory constituted the twelfth consecutive setback in a state vote for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party and therefore was widely interpreted as indicative for the national elections later that year.[9] Early on in his tenure, Weil emphasized consolidating Lower Saxony's finances.[10]

As Lower Saxony has a 20 percent stake in Volkswagen (VW), Weil has been an ex-officio member of the company’s supervisory board since February 2013. Within the supervisory board, he serves on the mediation and the nomination committees.[11] Only a few months after Weil took office, Germany won a decisive victory over the European Commission in its bid to preserve state influence at VW, when the European Court of Justice rejected an attempt by the Commission to abolish a state veto over key decisions such as factory closures, mergers and acquisitions.[12]

Weil was elected vice president of the Bundesrat from 1 March 2013,[13] and served as President of the Bundesrat from November 2013 to October 2014.

Other activities[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Weil is married to Rosemarie Kerkow-Weil, the former president of the University of Hanover who teaches at the HAWK Hochschule Hildesheim/Holzminden/Göttingen, and they have one son.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
David McAllister
Prime Minister of Lower Saxony
since 19 February 2013
Incumbent
Preceded by
Herbert Schmalstieg
Mayor of Hanover
1 November 2006 – 19 February 2013
Succeeded by
Stefan Schostok
Party political offices
Preceded by
Olaf Lies
Chairman of the Social Democratic Party
in Lower Saxony

20 January 2012 –
Incumbent