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Hans-Gert Pöttering (born 15 September 1945) is a German conservative politician (CDU, European People's Party), and was the President of the European Parliament from January 2007 to July 2009.

Hans-Gert Pöttering
Pöttering, Hans-Gert-9757.jpg
President of the European Parliament
In office
16 January 2007 – 14 July 2009
Vice PresidentRodi Kratsa-Tsagaropoulou
Preceded byJosep Borrell
Succeeded byJerzy Buzek
Leader of the European People's Party-European Democrats
In office
20 July 1999 – 16 January 2007
Preceded byWilfried Martens
Succeeded byJoseph Daul
Member of the European Parliament
for Germany
In office
17 July 1979 – 30 June 2014
Chairman of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation
Assumed office
1 January 2010
Preceded byBernhard Vogel
Personal details
Born (1945-09-15) 15 September 1945 (age 73)
Bersenbrück, Germany
Political partyChristian Democratic Union
ChildrenJohannes
Benedict
ResidenceBad Iburg, Germany
Alma materUniversity of Bonn
University of Geneva
Graduate Institute of International Studies
Columbia University
ProfessionLawyer
WebsiteOfficial website

He has served as a Member of the European Parliament continuously since the first elections in 1979 until 2014 and was Chairman of the European People's Party-European Democrats 1999–2007.

He is a member of the Reconciliation of European Histories Group.[1]

Early life and educationEdit

Pöttering never got to know his father who was killed in action during the last days of the Second World War. After Abitur and military service, he studied law, political science and history at the University of Bonn, the University of Geneva, the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva and at Columbia University in New York. He took his first state exam in jurisprudence in 1973, earned a PhD in political science and history in 1974 and took his second state exam in jurisprudence in 1976.

Political careerEdit

Member of the European Parliament, 1979–2014Edit

Pöttering was a member of the European Parliament from 1979 until 2014, the only member of the European Parliament to have served continuously since the first elections.

From 1984 to 1994 Pöttering was chairman of the Subcommittee on Security and Defence. From 1994 to 1996 he chaired the working group on the Intergovernmental Conference of the European People's Party (EPP) and EPP-ED Group, the results of which became the official EPP position for the Treaty of Amsterdam.

In 1994 Pöttering became Vice-President of the EPP, and from 1999 to 2007 he was the Chairman of the EPP-ED Group in the European Parliament. He was the top candidate of the CDU in the 2004 and the 2009 European elections.

Together with Volker Hassemer he is a member of the advisory board of the pro-European initiative "A Soul for Europe".

President of the European Parliament, 2007–2009Edit

As part of a deal with the socialist group, it was agreed that he would succeed Josep Borrell Fontelles as President of the European Parliament in the second part of the 2004–2009 term, which he did on 16 January 2007. He was elected with 450 of 689 valid votes, and defeated Italian Green Monica Frassoni, Danish Eurosceptic Jens-Peter Bonde and French Communist Francis Wurtz.

As President of the European Parliament he initiated the House of European History project. He made reference to the House in his inaugural speech in 2007.[2] For many years he is serving as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the House of European History in Brussels.

Later careerEdit

On 4 December 2009 Pöttering was elected Chairman of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation from 1 January 2010; he was succeeded by Norbert Lammert in 2018.

When the EPP membership of Hungarian party Fidesz was suspended in 2019, EPP president Joseph Daul appointed Pöttering – alongside Herman van Rompuy and Wolfgang Schüssel – to a group of high-level experts who were mandated to monitor Fidesz’s compliance with EPP values.[3][4]

Political positionsEdit

Pöttering is known as an enthusiastic European Federalist and an ally of Angela Merkel. He has stated that his priority will be to rejuvenate the European Constitution.

RecognitionEdit

National honoursEdit

Foreign honoursEdit

AwardsEdit

Honorary degreesEdit

Other activitiesEdit

Personal lifeEdit

Pöttering lives in Bad Iburg, Germany. He is Roman Catholic, divorced and has two sons.[9]

WorksEdit

  • Adenauers Sicherheitspolitik 1955–1963. Ein Beitrag zum deutsch-amerikanischen Verhältnis, Droste Verlag 1975, ISBN 3-7700-0412-4
  • Europas Vereinigte Staaten, Editio Interfrom 2000, ISBN 3-7201-5237-5, with Ludger Kühnhardt
  • Weltpartner Europäische Union, Edition Interfrom 2001, ISBN 3-7201-5252-9, with Ludger Kühnhardt
  • Kontinent Europa. Kern, Übergänge, Grenzen, Edition Interfrom 2002, ISBN 3-7201-5276-6, zusammen mit Ludger Kühnhardt
  • Von der Vision zur Wirklichkeit. Auf dem Weg zur Einigung Europas, Bouvier 2004, ISBN 3-416-03053-2

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

Party political offices
Preceded by
Wilfried Martens
Leader of the European People's Party-European Democrats
1999–2007
Succeeded by
Joseph Daul
Political offices
Preceded by
Josep Borrell
President of the European Parliament
2007–2009
Succeeded by
Jerzy Buzek