Katarina Barley

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Katarina Barley (2018)
Video presentation (2014)

Katarina Barley [ ˈbɑːli ] (born November 19, 1968 in Cologne ) is a German - British lawyer and politician ( SPD ). She was a member of the German Bundestag from 2013 to 2019 . Since July 2019 she has been a member of the ninth European Parliament and its Vice-President .

Before that, from June 2017 to March 2018 she was Federal Minister for Family, Seniors, Women and Youth , from September 2017 to March 2018, after the resignation of Andrea Nahles, Acting Federal Minister for Labor and Social Affairs and from March 2018 to June 2019 Federal Minister of Justice and for Consumer protection .

Origin, studies and profession

Barley - daughter of a British editor of Deutsche Welle and a German doctor - made 1987 her Abitur at the high school Rodenkirchen in Cologne. She then studied law at the Philipps University of Marburg and completed an exchange course at the University of Paris-South , which she completed in 1990 with the Diplôme de droit français (diploma in French law). After the first state examination in 1993, Barley began her doctorate with Bodo Pieroth at the University of Münster , which she completed in 1998. After the second state examination in 1998, she initially worked as a lawyer for a major Hamburg law firm in medical law before moving to the scientific service of the Rhineland-Palatinate state parliament . After that, she was a researcher at the Federal Constitutional Court in Renate Jaeger , later a judge at the district court Trier and at the District Court Wittlich . From 2008 until her election to the Bundestag, she was a consultant in the Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection in Mainz under the ministers Heinz Georg Bamberger and Jochen Hartloff . Barley has been a member of the ver.di regional civil servants' advisory board since 2010 .


Barley is divorced and has two sons. She has been married to the Dutch basketball coach Marco van den Berg since June 2020 .

SPD politician

Barley became a member of the SPD in 1994 at the age of 26. She was a member of the district executive of the SPD Trier-Saarburg from 2005 to 2016 , as district chairwoman from 2010, and was a member of the SPD party executive from 2017 to 2019 .

At the beginning of November 2015, the then SPD chairman suggested Sigmar Gabriel Barley as the successor to Yasmin Fahimi for the office of general secretary of the SPD. Barley received 93% of the delegate votes at the SPD federal party conference on December 11, 2015 . In April 2016, she proposed Juliane Seifert from the State Chancellery of Rhineland-Palatinate as the party's federal manager, which meant that the post was filled again after 2012. Barley has been a federal member of the ZDF television council since 2016 .

Member of the German Bundestag (2013-2019)

In the 2013 federal election she was a direct candidate in the Trier constituency and received 31.1 percent of the first votes. It moved into the Bundestag at number 7 on the state list.

In the SPD parliamentary group she belonged to the parliamentary left .

In the Bundestag, Katarina Barley was a full member of the following committees and bodies:

She was also a deputy member of the Legal Committee . Within the group she belonged to the parliamentary left. Barley is a member of the German-British parliamentary group in the German Bundestag.

In the 2017 federal election , she received 33.7 percent of the valid first votes in her constituency and was therefore subject to the CDU candidate Andreas Steier . It moved back into the Bundestag via third place on the state list.

After her election to the European Parliament in 2019, she told the President of the Bundestag that she would renounce her membership in the German Bundestag at the end of July 1. Isabel Mackensen is the successor .

Federal Minister of Family Affairs (2017-2018)

On June 2, 2017, Barley was appointed the new Federal Family Minister and gave up her post as SPD General Secretary. She thus succeeded Manuela Schwesig , who became Prime Minister of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania after Erwin Sellering's resignation .

On September 28, 2017, Barley also took over provisional management of the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs from her party colleague Andrea Nahles , who had previously been elected chairman of the SPD parliamentary group .

Barley led the official business until the swearing-in of the new federal cabinet on March 14, 2018.

Federal Minister of Justice (2018-2019)

Katarina Barley, 2019

On March 14, 2018, Katarina Barley was appointed Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection in the Merkel IV cabinet by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier .

On October 17, 2018, the SPD party presidium nominated Barley, together with Udo Bullmann , unanimously as the top candidate for the upcoming 2019 European elections . In 2019 she was elected to the European Parliament. She announced, regardless of the outcome of the election, to resign from her ministerial office.

On June 27, 2019, she was dismissed from the office of Federal Minister of Justice. She was followed by Christine Lambrecht after in office.

Member of the European Parliament (since 2019)

Barley took up her mandate as a member of the European Parliament with the constitution on July 2, 2019. She was elected vice-president by Parliament the next day. She is a full member of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and an alternate member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs .

Political positions

Upload filter and ancillary copyright

Barley endorsed the controversial EU copyright reform 2018/2019 , which upload filter (Article 13) and ancillary rights (Articles 11). Protest against the EU copyright reform u. a. Numerous scientists, internet pioneers, civil rights organizations, business associations, internet experts from all parties (including the digital politicians of the SPD) and around 5 million citizens in a petition.

Barley voted on February 20, 2019 in the EU Council of Ministers as the responsible German Justice Minister for the reform. Had Barley not approved the reform in the cabinet of the federal government, Germany would have had to abstain from the group of EU states. In that case the necessary majority would not have come about. You voted against the agreed coalition agreement.

After the EU Parliament approved the copyright reform on March 26, 2019, Barley recommended to the other members of the Federal Cabinet that Germany approve the new EU directive in the final vote in the Council of the European Union on April 15, 2019. The Minister of Justice was accused of acting inconsistently because she had initially positioned herself against upload filters and then nevertheless advocated a guideline whose Article 17, in the opinion of many experts, cannot be implemented without an upload filter.

Criticism of the 2019 European election campaign

Barley came under fire because, as the top candidate for the European elections in Germany in 2019, she gave an interview for the TV station RT Deutsch , which critics referred to as “Putin's propaganda organ” .



Katarina Barley is a member of the Europa-Union Deutschland , which is committed to a federal Europe and the European unification process. She has been on the Board of Trustees of the Carlo Schmid Foundation since 2018 .

Fonts (selection)

  • Local voting rights for foreigners according to the reorganization of Article 28, Paragraph 1, Sentence 3 of the Basic Law. (Writings on European law. Volume 55). Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1999, ISBN 3-428-09410-7 (= dissertation, University of Münster 1997).

Web links

Commons : Katarina Barley  - Collection of images, videos and audio files


  • Joachim Jahn , lawyer through and through , NJW-aktuell, issue 15/2018, p. 12/13.


  1. Katarina Barley: Europe is our future. In: theeuropean.de. February 17, 2017, accessed June 2, 2017 .
  2. Barley on Brexit: "Nothing is like it was before." In: Berliner Morgenpost , June 25, 2016, accessed on June 2, 2017.
  3. Katarina Barley in the Munzinger Archive , accessed on June 2, 2017 ( beginning of the article freely available)
  4. Katarina privately. In: katarina-barley.de , accessed on September 25, 2013.
  5. Katarina Barley at Wolters Kluwer .
  6. ^ Daniel Friedrich Sturm : What "Gabriels Neue" plans to do with the SPD. In: welt.de . February 16, 2016, accessed May 9, 2017 .
  7. Yes said: Katarina Barley and Marco van den Berg got married , Trierischer Volksfreund, June 19, 2020
  8. Katarina Barley spd.de
  9. Gabriel's candidate: Katarina Barley is to become the new general secretary of the SPD. In: spiegel.de , November 1, 2015.
  10. Christoph Hickmann: The woman who should moderate Gabriel. In: sueddeutsche.de . December 11, 2015, accessed June 2, 2017.
  11. Juliane Seifert becomes SPD federal manager. In: vorwaerts.de , April 25, 2016, accessed May 22, 2017
  12. Influence through the back door. In: zeit.de , July 8, 2016, accessed May 22, 2017
  13. Constituency results for the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, constituency 204 - Trier ( Memento from September 23, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) In: bundeswahlleiter.de , accessed on September 26, 2013.
  14. Selected applicants for the state list: Rhineland-Palatinate. ( Memento from October 16, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) In: bundeswahlleiter.de , accessed on September 26, 2013.
  15. ^ Members of the parliamentary left
  16. ^ Result of constituency 203 , Federal Returning Officer, accessed on February 7, 2018
  17. Katarina Barley: Facebook post. In: “Katarina Barley” on Facebook. June 5, 2019, accessed June 24, 2019 .
  18. ^ Wolfgang Kreilinger: Niederkirchen: Isabel Mackensen on the way to Berlin. In: The Rhine Palatinate . June 11, 2019, accessed June 24, 2019 .
  19. Barley takes over the Ministry . In: swr.de . June 2, 2017. Retrieved June 2, 2017.
  20. ^ After Sellering's resignation: Personnel rogue in the SPD. In: tagesschau.de . May 30, 2017. Retrieved May 30, 2017.
  21. RP ONLINE: Change to the top of the SPD parliamentary group: Barley should take over the labor ministry from Nahles. Retrieved September 28, 2017 .
  22. Federal Government | Katarina Barley. Retrieved September 28, 2017 .
  23. The new cabinet at a glance spiegel.de, March 14, 2018
  24. SPD nominates Barley as a candidate tagesschau.de, October 18, 2018
  25. Three Germans become Vice-Presidents in the EU Parliament. In: Zeit Online . July 3, 2019, accessed July 13, 2019 .
  26. Katarina BARLEY. In: European Parliament website europarl.europa.eu. Retrieved July 13, 2019 .
  27. EU copyright, Article 13 and upload filter: Barley defends yes to EU reform
  28. How the government kindles the net anger
  29. Open letter: Digital associations are resisting upload filters and ancillary copyright. Retrieved June 27, 2019 .
  30. Open letter: Broad alliance against European upload filter regulation. (No longer available online.) In: Zeit Online. Archived from the original on July 4, 2018 ; accessed on July 4, 2018 .
  31. EU copyright, Article 13 and upload filter: Barley defends yes to EU reform
  32. "We reject an obligation of platforms to use upload filters to" filter "content uploaded by users for copyright infringing content as disproportionate." Coalition agreement for the 19th legislative period on March 12, 2018, lines 2212-2214
  33. mdr.de: Barley wants to agree to controversial copyright reform April 4, 2019
  34. bento.de: Yes to upload filters! No to upload filters! Why you can write off the SPD before the European elections April 5, 2019
  35. Barley irritated with interview for propaganda station (article in Tagesspiegel from April 12, 2019)
  36. ^ Katarina Barley website of the Europa-Union Deutschland. Retrieved January 12, 2018