Werner Schulz

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Werner Schulz (2010)

Werner Gustav Schulz (born January 22, 1950 in Zwickau ) is a German politician ( Alliance 90 / The Greens ). He was a member of the German Bundestag from 1990 to 2005 and a member of the European Parliament from 2009 to 2014 . Schulz is considered to be the only prominent civil rights activist from the GDR who was able to assert himself permanently in his party.

Live and act

Education and profession as a scientist

Werner Schulz grew up in Zwickau as the son of an independent haulage contractor and former career officer from a social democratic family. From 1964 to 1968 he graduated from the extended secondary school " Käthe Kollwitz ". His father forbade him to go to the Young Pioneers . After graduating from high school with vocational training as a locomotive fitter in 1968, Schulz completed a degree in food technology at the Humboldt University in Berlin , which he completed in 1972 as a graduate engineer . From 1974 he worked as a research assistant at the Humboldt University.

The way to the GDR opposition

Schulz was essentially politicized by the Prague Spring . A formative, self-reproachful experience was that, in response to external pressure, contrary to his convictions, he signed a declaration with which the undersigned welcomed the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops .

Since the 1970s Schulz was active in the church peace , ecology and human rights movements. From 1976 to 1978 he did his alternative military service as a construction soldier . In 1976 he got involved with the expatriate Wolf Biermann . Because of his public protest against the invasion of Soviet troops in Afghanistan , his position at the university was dismissed in 1980 shortly before he had to submit his dissertation . Since 1982 he has been a participant in the Pankower Peace Circle , the first independent peace circle under the umbrella of the church.

Some time after his discharge from university, he became a research assistant at the Institute for Secondary Raw Materials Management ( recycling technology ). From 1988 to 1990 he was head of the environmental hygiene department in the district hygiene inspection in Berlin-Lichtenberg .

In May 1989 he openly criticized the fraudulent local elections in the GDR .

The political upheavals of 1989/1990

Schulz got involved in the New Forum from autumn 1989 . Initially only sent from Berlin to Saxony as a contact person for the New Forum , he witnessed the big Monday demonstration in Leipzig on October 9, 1989 and relocated his political commitment to Saxony for the next few years. He represented the New Forum six times at the Central Round Table of the GDR .

From March to October 1990 he was a member of the first freely elected People's Chamber in the GDR and one of three speakers for the Bündnis 90 / Greens parliamentary group. Martin Böttger was actually elected, but he waived his mandate in favor of Werner Schulz. From October 3, 1990, he was a delegated member of the German Bundestag and worked on the finance committee .

Schulz criticized the organization of the reunification . He took part in the round table to work out a draft constitution and hoped for a unification of the two German states in accordance with Article 146 of the Basic Law . Joining the Federal Republic of Germany under Article 23, with the result that there was no new beginning together, was a disappointment for him. Because of the special historical significance of the date, Schulz declared that November 9 was a national holiday instead of October 3 .

Speaker of the Bundestag group Alliance 90 / Greens (1990–1994)

In 1990 the list connection “Alliance 90 / Greens - Citizens Movement” moved into the Bundestag with 6.0 percent of the votes in the East German electoral area. Since the West German Greens failed at the five percent hurdle , the eight East German alliance Green MPs did not reach the parliamentary group strength , but formed the Bundestag group Bündnis 90 / Greens. Werner Schulz became its spokesman and at the same time Parliamentary Managing Director .

On September 21, 1991 he founded Bündnis 90 as a political party with members of Democracy Now , Initiative Peace and Human Rights and parts of the New Forum . Schulz was one of those members of the New Forum who switched to the Alliance 90 party. From 1991 to 1993 Schulz was one of nine equal speakers of Bündnis 90 and headed the negotiating delegation for the merger with the Greens. On May 14, 1993, the party merged with the Greens to form Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen . The West German Greens had already merged with the Green Party in the GDR at the end of 1990 . Schulz had pushed through the introduction of Bündnis 90 in today's party name.

At a special party conference of the united party on the Bosnian War on October 9, 1993, Schulz was one of the few supporters of a military intervention. This position was supported by only 46 delegates, but later prevailed in the party on the occasion of the Kosovo war .

Schulz criticized the “parliamentary buttock geography”, the rigid left-right schematic of West German characteristics, and argued that the Greens in Saxony should consciously keep a black-green coalition open after the 1994 state elections . He repeated the call for his party to open up to coalitions with the Union several times in the following years. At the same time, he always spoke out clearly against government cooperation with the SED successor party, the PDS .

Parliamentary director of the Bundestag faction (1994–1998)

He retained the position of parliamentary director of the Bundestag faction even after the Greens re- entered the German Bundestag from 1994 to 1998. Joschka Fischer , on the other hand, took over the faction chairmanship .

In April 1998 he ran for mayor of Leipzig and was defeated in the first ballot against Wolfgang Tiefensee, who was elected to office for the first time in the second ballot that followed .

Member of the red-green government (1998-2005)

Werner Schulz at an election event (2005)

Werner Schulz said he was cross with the Green Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer during the red-green years of government , because he insisted that the political decision-making process should come from the parliamentary group . Instead of a parliamentary group spokesman, Fischer was looking for a government spokesman . In addition, Fischer had thwarted the election of Werner Schulz as parliamentary group chairman in 1998 and instead pushed through Rezzo hose . Fischer rated his friend Hose as a more loyal stability factor for the coalition, while he mistrusted Schulz in this regard. In 2002, Fischer brought Schulz up for discussion as the successor to Antje Vollmer as Vice President of the Bundestag . Observers estimated that the motivation was that Fischer wanted to thwart Schulz's renewed attempt at the parliamentary group chairmanship. Out of respect for Antje Vollmer, he declined to run for the position of Vice President of the Bundestag and was defeated by Katrin Göring-Eckardt in the election as parliamentary group leader. Like Schulz, Joschka Fischer also speaks in retrospect of a deep personal rift between the two. In addition, he admits that Schulz had quite justified claims to the parliamentary group chairmanship or to a ministerial office due to his talent, his competence, his services and as a representative of East Germany.

After Schulz had entered the German Bundestag through the state list of Saxony until 1998 , he ran in Berlin in 2002 . With his application speech at a state members' meeting, he was able to sweep the party members away and surprisingly prevail over competitors Christian Ströbele and Andrea Fischer for a secure second place on the list behind Renate Künast . He was also a direct candidate in the Berlin-Pankow constituency . Here he called for the election of the Social Democrat Wolfgang Thierse to prevent the direct mandate from going to the PDS as in 1994 and 1998.

From October 1998 to 2005, during the entire time of the red-green coalition under Gerhard Schröder , Werner Schulz was the economic policy spokesman for the Bundestag parliamentary group Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen. He was the only member of the red-green coalition who did not want to agree to the third and fourth Hartz laws and abstained. He was also the spokesman for the affairs of the new federal states in the parliamentary group.

On July 1, 2005, he sharply criticized the vote of confidence placed by Chancellor Gerhard Schröder on the same day in a speech to the Bundestag. In doing so , he compared the actions of the SPD parliamentary group leader, Müntefering, with the GDR People's Chamber dominated by the SED , where the party and state leadership had "invited" the MPs to join the party's will. The speech sparked outraged reactions from members of the government factions. On the other hand, the speech was widely recognized for its rhetorical sharpness and decisiveness. The seminar for general rhetoric at the University of Tübingen named it Speech of the Year 2005 .

After the dissolution of the Bundestag by Federal President Horst Köhler on July 21, 2005, Schulz and SPD MP Jelena Hoffmann filed a lawsuit against this decision with the Federal Constitutional Court on August 1, 2005 . He wanted to ensure that the Chancellor could not dissolve parliament out of mere suspicion that his coalition partners were unfaithful. This instrument in the hands of a Chancellor means that the MP is no longer free and subject only to his own conscience, as the Basic Law prescribes. On August 25, 2005, the lawsuit was dismissed as unfounded .

In the candidacy for a place on the list for the early federal election 2005 , Schulz clearly failed because of Wolfgang Wieland with 169 to 516 votes. Even with a candidacy for fourth place on the list, he was defeated by Özcan Mutlu with 225 against 348 votes in the second ballot. Because of the popular approval of his criticism of the dissolution of the Bundestag, Schulz ran for election in the Berlin-Pankow constituency on September 18, 2005 as a direct candidate. With Bundestag President Wolfgang Thierse (SPD) and Günter Nooke (CDU) he competed with old friends from the New Forum at the time of the peaceful revolution . All three were members of the first freely elected People's Chamber. Schulz is friends with Thierse, and Nooke was an important comrade in Alliance 90 until 1993 before he switched to the CDU. The 32-year-old state chairman Stefan Liebich was a candidate for the PDS . Schulz received 12.8 percent and failed, as did Nooke. Thierse, who was the only candidate to have a secure place on the list, won the constituency with 41.1 percent of the first votes , followed by Stefan Liebich with 24.3 percent.

Time without mandate from 2005 to 2009

After leaving the Bundestag, Werner Schulz initially withdrew from politics. He renovated an old half-timbered house in the Uckermark . In a citizens' initiative against an industrial mast system or in the fight against right-wing extremism , he carried out grassroots work on site. He also wrote essays and gave lectures.

Member of the European Parliament (2009-2014)

On January 24, 2009, Schulz was surprisingly elected to the eighth place on the list for the 2009 European elections by the federal delegates' conference of Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen . Once again, as an outsider - at least since his criticism of the actions of the red-green government in 2005, he was considered isolated in his party - with a brilliant speech he had succeeded in dragging the delegates away. In the first ballot, Schulz received the most votes among the eight candidates with 43 percent (including the longtime MEP Friedrich-Wilhelm Graefe zu Baringdorf ), in the second ballot he defeated the former Green Youth spokesman Jan Philipp with 68 percent Albrecht through.

Since the European elections he has been a member of the European Parliament of the Greens / EFA group and was a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET) and a deputy member of the Economic and Monetary Committee (ECON). He was also deputy chairman of the European Parliament's Russia delegation.

In June 2012, together with MEP Rebecca Harms and others , he demonstrated in a Ukrainian football stadium at the European Championship match Germany - Netherlands for the release of Yulia Tymoshenko and other political prisoners imprisoned in Ukraine.

He no longer ran for the 2014 European elections .

Other offices

From 2003 to 2008 Schulz was deputy chairman of the foundation board of the foundation for coming to terms with the SED dictatorship .

From 2003 to 2009 he was a member of the Presidium of the German Evangelical Church Congress .

Schulz is a member of the board of trustees of the Peaceful Revolution Foundation in Leipzig.



  • Oh you green 90 . In: Werner Schulz, Heinrich Böll Foundation (ed.): The alliance case. Political perspectives 10 years after the founding of Alliance 90 . 1st edition. Edition Temmen, Bremen 2001, ISBN 3-86108-796-0 , p. 135-143 (208 pp.).
  • What is fermenting for a long time finally becomes anger. The run-up of the GDR opposition to the peaceful revolution . In: Eckart Conze , Katharina Gajdukowa and Sigrid Koch-Baumgarten (eds.): The democratic revolution 1989 in the GDR . Böhlau Verlag, Cologne / Weimar 2009.


Web links

Commons : Werner Schulz  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
 Wikinews: Werner Schulz  - in the news

Individual evidence

  1. zeit.de: Risk Sunflower (October 1, 1998); taz.de: The Alliance Case , (January 18, 2002)
  2. ^ Eckhard Jesse, Martin Böttger: Peaceful Revolution and German Unity. Saxon civil rights activists take stock , Ch. Links Verlag, Berlin 2006, pp. 226, 270.
  3. ^ Birk Meinhardt : A question of the constitution , portrait of Werner Schulz, Süddeutsche Zeitung, 22./23. October 2005, p. 3
  4. ^ A b Wolfgang Kühnel, Carola Sallmon-Metzner: From illegality to parliament. Career history and concept of the new citizens' movements , edited by Helmut Müller-Enbergs, Marianne Schulz and Jan Wielgohs, LinksDruck, Berlin 1991, p. 385.
  5. Archived copy ( Memento of the original dated August 4, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.kkg-zwickau.org
  6. Marianne Subklew (Ed.): I became more courageous. The Pankower Peace Circle - political self-assertion and public contradiction. Exhibition catalog (texts: Marianne Subklew, design: Martin Hoffmann), Berlin 2003 (revision 2009), pp. 76–77 (self-disclosure).
  7. a b c d e n-tv.de: You are walking in the wrong direction! (April 9, 2009)
  8. European Parliament: MPs website by Werner Schulz ( Memento of the original from October 30, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.werner-schulz-europa.eu
  9. Werner Schulz: What has been fermenting for a long time finally becomes anger. , in: Peaceful Revolution and German Unity. Saxon civil rights activists take stock , edited by Eckhard Jesse and Martin Böttger, Ch. Links Verlag, Berlin 2006, p. 225.
  10. ^ Eckhard Jesse, Martin Böttger: Peaceful Revolution and German Unity. Saxon civil rights activists take stock , Ch. Links Verlag, Berlin 2006, p. 244.
  11. zeit.de: Melancholic Realist (October 7, 1994)
  12. a b Joschka Fischer: The red-green years , Knaur, Munich 2008, pp. 215, 221.
  13. zeit.de: Change of party of the green civil rights activists to the CDU: They were never far to the left and were never green (December 27, 1996)
  14. Jutta Ditfurth: That were the Greens , Econ, Munich 2000, p. 187 f.
  15. So in a dispute with Gregor Gysi , spiegel.de: The cadres also rule (March 28, 1994)
  16. stern.de: “No longer just Birkenstock party” ( Memento of the original from July 11, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , Interview with Werner Schulz (February 5, 2009) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.stern.de
  17. a b c spiegel.de: Joschka des Ostens (November 18, 2002)
  18. a b c Joschka Fischer: The red-green years , Knaur, Munich 2008, p. 69 ff.
  19. spiegel.de: Schulz beats celebrities in list election (January 19, 2002)
  20. freitag.de: Farewell constituency (September 2, 2005)
  21. Christoph Egle, Reimut Zohlnhöfer: End of the red-green project. A balance sheet of the Schröder government 2002–2005 , VS Verlag, Wiesbaden 2007, p. 15.
  22. In the wording: Personal statement by Werner Schulz. Spiegel Online, July 1, 2007, accessed January 11, 2020; Video of the speech on the server of the parliamentary television of the Bundestag
  23. Award for the speech of the year 2005 on the website of the University of Tübingen
  24. Christoph Egle, Reimut Zohlnhöfer: End of the red-green project. A balance sheet of the Schröder government 2002-2005 , VS Verlag, Wiesbaden 2007, p. 70 f.
  25. spiegel.de: Greens fail Dutschke (June 19, 2005)
  26. mutlu.de: The state list of the Berlin Greens for the federal election campaign is available  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link / www.mutlu.de  
  27. taz.de: Three beards are two too many (September 9, 2005)
  28. a b c schraegstrich , December 2008, p. 41 ( Memento of the original from March 22, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 3.9 MB) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.gruene-partei.de
  29. spiegel.de: Comeback for Europe (January 24, 2009)
  30. ^ Profile page Werner Schulz on the website of the European Parliament
  31. spiegel.de June 13, 2012: Green politicians show political posters at the EM game
  32. 2nd Board of Trustees (2003–2008) ( Memento from May 28, 2009 in the Internet Archive )
  33. ^ Board of Trustees of the Peaceful Revolution Foundation