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Stephan Weil
Weil, Stephan.jpg
Stephan Weil
Minister President of Lower Saxony
Assumed office
19 February 2013
Preceded byDavid McAllister
Leader of the Social Democratic Party in Lower Saxony
Assumed office
20 January 2012
Preceded byOlaf Lies
President of the Bundesrat
In office
1 November 2013 – 31 October 2014
Preceded byWinfried Kretschmann
Succeeded byVolker Bouffier
Mayor of Hanover
In office
1 November 2006 – 19 February 2013
Preceded byHerbert Schmalstieg
Succeeded byStefan Schostok
Member of the Landtag of Lower Saxony
for Hannover-Buchholz
Assumed office
19 February 2013
Preceded byGisela Konrath
Personal details
Stephan-Peter Weil

(1958-12-15) 15 December 1958 (age 60)
Hamburg, West Germany
Political partySocial Democratic Party of Germany
Spouse(s)Rosemarie Kerkow-Weil (1987-)

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] From 1 November 2013 until 31 October 2014 he was President of the Bundesrat and ex officio deputy to the President of Germany. In November 2017, he was again elected Minister President with the votes of SPD and CDU.

Early life and education

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

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

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 Minister President 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 18 September 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

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. On the Bundesrat, he is a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and deputy chairman of the Committee on European Affairs.

In August 2017, Weil called for parliament to be dissolved and new elections to be held after one deputy, Elke Twesten, quit the Green Party, costing his coalition government its one-seat parliamentary majority.[14][15]

In November 2017, he was again elected Minister President with the votes of SPD and CDU.

Other activities

Corporate boards

  • Deutsche Messe AG, chairman of the supervisory board (2009–2012)
  • Sparkasse Hannover, chairman of the supervisory board (2006–2013)

Non-profit organizations

Personal life

In 1987, Weil married public health expert Rosemarie Kerkow-Weil, (born 1954), the former president of Leibniz University Hannover who teaches at the HAWK Hochschule Hildesheim/Holzminden/Göttingen, and they have one son.


  1. ^ "Major Setback for Merkel: Last-Minute Win for Germany's SPD and Greens". Der Spiegel. 21 January 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  2. ^ Hebel, Christina (19 February 2013). "Neuer Niedersachsen-Premier Weil: Der Anti-Schröder startet durch" [New Lower Saxony PM Weil: The Anti-Schröder takes off]. Spiegel Online (in German). Retrieved 19 February 2013.
  3. ^ Official home page of Stephan Weil (in German). Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Bürgermeister Strauch gratuliert Stephan Weil" [Mayor Strauch congratulates Stephan Weil] (in German). City of Hanover. 19 February 2013. Archived from the original on 12 April 2013. Retrieved 19 February 2013.
  5. ^ Ich will Ministerpräsident werden! (in German). Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  6. ^ Stephan Weil, der 95,5 Prozent-Mann (in German). Retrieved 21 January 2013
  7. ^ Das SPD-Damenduell ist entschieden (in German). Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  8. ^ David Crossland (January 21, 2013), CDU Loses Lower Saxony: State Defeat Heralds Tough Re-Election Fight for Merkel Spiegel Online.
  9. ^ David Crossland (January 21, 2013), CDU Loses Lower Saxony: State Defeat Heralds Tough Re-Election Fight for Merkel Spiegel Online.
  10. ^ Stephan Weil takes reigns of center-left coalition in Lower Saxony Deutsche Welle, February 19, 2013.
  11. ^ Committees of the Supervisory Board Volkswagen.
  12. ^ Michele Sinner (October 22, 2013), EU's top court rules Germany can keep VW veto law Reuters.
  13. ^ Stephan Weil neuer Vizepräsident des Bundesrats (in German). Welt. Retrieved 23 March 2013.
  14. ^ Erik Kirschbaum and Jan Schwartz (August 4, 2017), Boon for Merkel as SPD-Greens lose Lower Saxony majority Reuters.
  15. ^ Guy Chazan (August 4, 2017), SPD suffers blow with loss of majority in Lower Saxony Financial Times.
  16. ^ Bernd Westphal wird neuer Beirats-Vorsitzender beim Wirtschaftsforum der SPD Business Forum of the Social Democratic Party of Germany, press release of June 7, 2018.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
David McAllister
Prime Minister of Lower Saxony
since 19 February 2013
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 –
This page was last edited on 1 December 2019, at 14:36
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