Fritz Kuhn

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Fritz Kuhn (2006)

Fritz Kuhn (born  June 29, 1955 in Bad Mergentheim ) is a German politician ( Alliance 90 / The Greens ). From 2000 to 2002 he was federal chairman of Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen and from 2002 to 2013 a member of the Bundestag , from 2005 to 2009 he was also chairman of the Green parliamentary group in the Bundestag .
He has been Lord Mayor of the Baden-Württemberg state capital Stuttgart since 2013 . At the beginning of 2020 he announced that he would not stand for re-election in autumn 2020. Kuhn is Deputy President of the German Association of Cities .

Childhood and youth

Kuhn was born in Bad Mergentheim in 1955 as the son of a simple civil servant who worked in the German Armed Forces . He grew up in Memmingen and went to the local Bernhard-Strigel-Gymnasium .


After high school in 1974 graduated in Memmingen Kuhn a study of German literature and philosophy at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and the University of Tübingen , which he in 1980 as a Master of Arts (MA) with a focus on linguistics ended.


He then worked from 1981 to 1984 as a research assistant at the University of Augsburg . From 1989 to 1992 Kuhn worked as a lecturer for linguistic communication at the Merz Academy in Stuttgart .

From the SPD to the Greens

As a student, Kuhn was politically involved a. a. at the Memminger Jusos , in the SMV and as a student representative . After then-Mayor John Bauer a dramaturge of the Memminger Theater in autumn 1973 terminated had, Kuhn was in organizing a large demonstration involved.

As a student, Kuhn became a member of the SPD , which he left in 1978 because of Helmut Schmidt's politics .

In 1980 he was one of the founding members of the Greens in Baden-Württemberg .

In 1981 he was on the board of directors of the Tübingen Green District Association and the State Green Association. Parallel to his work at the University of Augsburg, he was an advisor to the parliamentary group of the Greens in Baden-Württemberg.

Green state politician

From 1984 to 1988 and from 1992 to 2000 Kuhn was a member of the state parliament of Baden-Württemberg and was chairman of the parliamentary group of the Greens.

From 1991 to 1992 he was spokesman for the state executive board.

Green federal politician

Party politician

After the 1998 Bundestag elections , he was part of the Greens delegation to the coalition negotiations with the SPD.

From June 2000 to December 2002 Kuhn was federal chairman of Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen, initially together with Renate Künast and from March 2001 with Claudia Roth .

In the election campaign for the federal election in 2005 , Kuhn was the election campaign manager of the federal party. He belonged to the party council of the Greens in, but failed in 2008 with his candidacy , and therefore retired from the board of.

Member of the Bundestag

From 2002 to January 2013 he was a member of the German Bundestag . He represented the constituency of Heidelberg , but always entered the Bundestag via the Baden-Württemberg state list . In the Bundestag he initially headed the economics and labor faction working group and was then from February to October 2005 the foreign policy spokesman for the Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen parliamentary group .

On September 27, 2005 Kuhn and Renate Künast were elected chairmen of the Bundestag parliamentary group Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen. After the 2009 Bundestag election , he did not run for this office again. However, Kuhn was elected one of the deputy chairpersons. When he took office as Lord Mayor of Stuttgart, he left the Bundestag in January 2013.

Green local politician

Fritz Kuhn (2011)

In February 2012 he resigned from the deputy group chairmanship to run for the office of Lord Mayor of Stuttgart. Kuhn was nominated as his party's candidate at a general assembly in March 2012.

Election to the Lord Mayor

Official final result of the main election on October 7, 2012
Fritz Kuhn
Sebastian Turner
Bettina Wilhelm
Hannes Rockenbauch
Turnout: 46.7%
Official final result of the new election on October 21, 2012
Fritz Kuhn
Sebastian Turner
Turnout: 47.2%

With a turnout of 46.7%, Kuhn achieved 36.5% in the first ballot on October 7, 2012. The non-party candidate Sebastian Turner , supported by the CDU , FDP and the Free Voters , was 2 percentage points behind Kuhn with 34.5% of the vote. 15.1% voted for the mayor of Schwäbisch Hall, nominated by the SPD , Bettina Wilhelm.

Since none of the candidates achieved an absolute majority , a second ballot was required, in which a relative majority was sufficient.

After Wilhelm withdrew her candidacy, the Stuttgart SPD district executive unanimously called for Kuhn's election. There is a great deal of agreement between the SPD and Kuhn, "especially on the issues of affordable housing, the establishment of community schools and the safeguarding of workers' rights," said the SPD.

Kuhn, then 57 years old, received 52.9% of the votes in the second ballot on October 21, 2012; Turner received 45.3%. Kuhn's term of office began on January 7, 2013. This makes him the first green Lord Mayor of a state capital.

Stuttgart 21

Fritz Kuhn at the 4th Federal Municipal Political Congress, 2014 in Stuttgart

In his inaugural speech, Kuhn criticized the lack of transparency in the Stuttgart 21 project , which had led to a "crisis of confidence", and declared his intention to discuss alternatives. In December 2016, Kuhn committed to the rail project. Stuttgart 21 is doing Stuttgart good, that is his opinion, which he shares with the majority of the local council . The city is on the side of those who want to finish the project “promptly and with quality”.

Transport, environmental and climate policy

As a federal politician, Kuhn called for a transport policy that would lead to more fuel-efficient cars, the introduction of clear limit values, tax exemption for energy-saving cars, more local public transport and speed limits. Economic efficiency and climate policy do not have to contradict one another. At the local political level, Kuhn wanted to act as mayor candidate in 2012 to protect the climate in the transport and energy sectors. According to plans by the mayor at the time, Wolfgang Schuster , the city of Stuttgart should consume 20 percent less energy by 2020 than in 1990. In 2016, the municipality planned to “lay down” an energy concept for this. For further goals up to 2050 this should then be "updated". In his election manifesto in 2012, Kuhn did not call for any further energy policy targets. When it comes to traffic, Kuhn focused on avoiding and reducing traffic. Above all, immediate health risks from fine dust in the state capital should be reduced. Kuhn called for an improvement in parking space management , more footpaths and bike paths, an expansion of local public transport and less car traffic “with less polluting types of drive”. He presented his concept for the energy transition for the city of Stuttgart in 2014. It envisages that the city will be able to manage without fossil fuels by 2050 and become “climate neutral”.

In April 2019, Fritz Kuhn declared that the city of Stuttgart was “not doing badly in terms of climate protection”, especially when it came to reducing energy consumption by 27 percent from 1990 to 2017. Nevertheless, “we have to step up a gear” if Stuttgart is to be climate-neutral by 2050 close. The SPD accused Kuhn, however, of the fact that the data he presented on climate protection and energy saving were in fact much worse. The mayor had "not done his homework". The investments made by Stadtwerke Stuttgart in renewable energies “literally collapsed”. According to the Morgenstadt study by the Fraunhofer Institute from September 2016, the share of renewable energies in Stuttgart is 13 percent. In contrast, the average of the 29 German swarm cities examined (municipalities with a high proportion of students and young professionals) is 22 percent. Thus the climate-relevant CO 2 emissions of 8.92 t per capita are also above average in the state capital Stuttgart. The SPD demanded 2/3 (300 million euros) from the communal investments to be used for the heating turnaround, which in their opinion was overdue . Stuttgart could cover up to 21% of the electricity consumption with photovoltaic systems on the roofs, according to Thomas Uhland in his mast thesis from 2018. Based on the expansion rate from 2015 to 2017, according to Uhland's calculations, it would take 200 years for the electricity potential from photovoltaics in the case of urban properties. The CDU and the SPD have also criticized the performance record for the expansion of photovoltaics . On the other hand, the city points out that the expansion is currently being hampered by a lack of structural engineers and fitters. For 2018 and 2019, however, a "boost" in the expansion of photovoltaic systems can be expected. For the SÖS / Linke -plus parliamentary group , Stuttgart is a “developing country” when it comes to climate protection. Not in 2050, but in 2035, the municipalities must become climate-neutral, as this is the only way to prevent the climate catastrophe .

In July 2019, Kuhn is supplementing the climate protection measures with a climate protection action program “World climate in need - Stuttgart is acting”. Accordingly, the city wants to invest 200 million euros from the budget surplus of 2018 in the targeted energy and transport turnaround. The program is intended to ensure more green spaces and more water in the city and to promote sustainable user behavior. The SPD and the SÖS / Linke-plus faction had further climate protection demands. The SPD wanted to invest 110 million in the urban tram . The reserves that are reserved for buying back the water supply are to be rededicated. By canceling the planned property tax cut for 2020, the Social Democrats wanted to use an additional 30 million for climate protection. In addition, the SPD wanted the rent for tenants not to be increased when promoting energy-efficient building renovation. The SÖS / Linke-plus wanted to use 105 million for the two-year financing of a 365-euro annual ticket for local public transport.

Housing policy

In Stuttgart - as in all economically strong cities - there is a lack of inexpensive apartments. Shortly after taking office, Kuhn announced that it would provide more apartments for the tense market. The goal is 1,800 new apartments per year. This value has been exceeded significantly since 2015: The city's statistical office speaks of around 2,000 newly built apartments every year.

600 of the new apartments are to be in the subsidized area, 300 of them as social housing . In 2017, the social housing target was achieved for the first time.

At the end of 2018, the stock of subsidized apartments in Stuttgart comprised 16,456 apartments, including 14,380 social rental apartments, 543 rental apartments for middle-income earners and 1,533 subsidized apartments for owner-occupied property. At the end of 2018, 4688 households were registered for social rental apartments in Stuttgart.

The largest development areas for housing are in urban hands, i. H. the city decides what will be built here. According to municipal guidelines, up to 80% subsidized apartments are to be built there. Likewise, through the SIM (Stuttgart interior development model), private investors must manage 30% subsidized housing construction on their areas with new building permits.

In addition, the city has introduced the statutes proposed by Kuhn against misappropriation - since 2016 it has prohibited the conversion of an apartment into commercial space or an unfounded vacancy for more than six months .

Cultural policy

Kuhn has declared cultural policy to be an "affair of the heart". Three times under him (2014, 2016 and 2018) Stuttgart has been named “cultural metropolis number 1” in Germany. Among other things, Kuhn campaigned for the renovation of the car sheds , the construction of the John Cranko School and the repurchase and development of Villa Berg . Currently (2019) he is pushing ahead with the renovation of the opera . The Littmannbau is to be renovated and expanded.

Foreign business of the Stuttgart Clinic

The Stuttgart Clinic ran an international unit from 2010 to 2016. Their task was to manage the international business of the clinic and to open up new markets. At the end of 2015 , the Kuhn subordinate municipal auditing office saw indications of fraudulent acts in two of these foreign transactions , whereupon the city ​​administration filed criminal charges . The background to this was the conclusion of contracts and side agreements.

On the one hand, a contract for the treatment of injured people from the Libyan civil war with a volume of around 26 million euros was agreed with the Libyan transitional government in 2013 . On the other hand, in 2014 a contract was signed with the Kuwaiti Ministry of Health for medical support for the Al-Razi orthopedic hospital , which was being set up at the time. For this purpose, 46 million euros, a large part of it through so-called subsidiary agreements, were estimated.

The public prosecutor's office is investigating fraud , bribery and embezzlement of investment funds. For example, 13.5 million euros are said to have been used for "directing costs" that were not included in the original contract, and the public prosecutor's office reported doubts about the correct billing. In addition, in many cases it is questionable whether an actual consideration was given. The public prosecutor's office initially investigated 21 people across Germany, including the then head of the International Unit and former Baden-Württemberg state chairman of the Greens, Andreas Braun . The Stuttgart Clinic reported payment defaults of 9.4 million euros for the contract in Libya.

In September 2018, the file inspection committee for the International Unit Klinikum Stuttgart of the municipal council was set up in order, among other things, to gain access to the files on the international business of the clinic.

The first interim report from March 2019, which is supported by all parliamentary groups except the Greens, accuses the former Green Hospital Mayor Werner Wölfle of having incorrectly or at least insufficiently informed the municipal council, who is solely entitled to terminate, without, however, following the events in the "International Unit" the faction leaders of the CDU and SPD , Alexander Kotz and Martin Körner. The city had signed a termination agreement with the former head of the clinic, Ralf-Michael Schmitz, with a total severance payment of 900,000 euros, which the council had approved. The majority of the committee sees “significant omissions” and “incomplete and incorrect information”.

The Greens do not see any violations of the duties at Wölfle and also not at Lord Mayor Kuhn, and they reject the accusation of cover-up. The proposal to terminate the former clinic director without notice did not necessarily have to be brought up to the local council. With the dissolution agreement, the city avoided a long-standing legal dispute , the Greens argued. Kuhn himself emphasizes that he has "organized a successful new beginning at the Stuttgart Clinic". “We have a new management team , we have changed the legal form in the municipal council and have turned to future issues for the clinic such as the new building program. This is crucial so that the clinic can maintain its top position and so that the employees can continue their excellent work for the benefit of the patients. "He made it clear that it would have been better to inform the local council" earlier "of the content of the auditor's report of December 2015. Kuhn pointed out that the public prosecutor had asked not to pass the report on to third parties. He apologized to the city councils for not having explicitly asked the public prosecutor whether he should at least have forwarded the report to the city council. However, a spokesman told the Stuttgarter Zeitung that the public prosecutor had not forbidden the information to be passed on to the municipal council. In the public municipal council debate on March 28, 2019, Kuhn referred to a letter from the public prosecutor's office from March 2016 that the report should not be passed on "so as not to jeopardize the investigation", adding that the city will be informed as soon as the public prosecutor's office or the police had no further reservations about publication.

Kuhn's administration announced in March 2020 that it considered the processing to be over. This has been confirmed by the Stuttgart regional council as the legal supervisory authority. On the decision of the municipal council, the regional council had assessed the approach of the city administration.

Coronavirus epidemic

After the respiratory disease COVID-19 reached Germany in early 2020, Kuhn began preparing for an epidemic from mid-February. The first infection with the novel corona virus was found in Stuttgart on March 4, 2020. On March 18, Kuhn convened the administrative staff. Kuhn addressed the citizens of Stuttgart in several video messages and in an open letter: “The coronavirus has the world firmly under control. Also Germany and our Stuttgart. That's why we have to stick together in our city now. It depends on each individual. It is a huge effort by the entire urban society. "


In 2013, Kuhn succeeded Frieder Birzele as Chairman of the Baden-Württemberg Adult Education Association . In 2019 he was confirmed in office.


In 2007 Fritz Kuhn was awarded the Baden-Württemberg Medal of Merit.


Kuhn is married to Waltraud Ulshöfer , a former member of the Green Parliament , and has two sons. He lives in Stuttgart-Mitte .


  • Munzinger International Biographical Archive 02/2006 from January 14, 2006 (la)

Web links

Commons : Fritz Kuhn  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

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  38. ^ Stuttgarter Zeitung, Stuttgart Germany: John Cranko School in Stuttgart: Porsche and the city sponsor the John Cranko Ballet School. Retrieved September 2, 2019 .
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