Jens Böhrnsen

Jens Böhrnsen (born 12 June 1949) is a German politician of the SPD. From 2005 to 2015, he has served as the President of the Senate and Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, that is, the head of government of the city-state Free Hanseatic City of Bremen. From 1 November 2009 until 31 October 2010 he was President of the Bundesrat and ex officio deputy to the President of Germany. Because of that he was acting head of state of Germany after the resignation of President Horst Köhler on 31 May 2010 and before the election of Christian Wulff as Köhler's successor on 30 June 2010. After voting for the SPD losses of more than five percentage points in the state election on May 10, 2015 Böhrnsen declared the next day that he would retire as head of government. His successor in the office of the Bremen government was Carsten Sieling, who was officially nominated on 18 May 2015 by the Bremen SPD.

He is a lawyer by profession and served as a judge in Bremen from 1978 to 1995, when he became a full-time politician.

Jens Böhrnsen
Portrait Buergermeister Boehrnsen
President of the Senate and Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen
In office
8 November 2005 – 17 July 2015
Preceded byHenning Scherf
Succeeded byCarsten Sieling
President of the Bundesrat
In office
1 November 2009 – 31 October 2010
Preceded byPeter Müller
Succeeded byHannelore Kraft
Acting Head of State of Germany
In office
31 May 2010 – 30 June 2010
ChancellorAngela Merkel
Preceded byHorst Köhler
Succeeded byChristian Wulff
Personal details
Born12 June 1949 (age 69)
Bremen, Germany
Political partySocial Democratic Party
Alma materUniversity of Kiel
University of Hamburg


Böhrnsen was born on 12 June 1949 in Gröpelingen, then a workers' district of Bremen, to parents active in the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) and labor unions. His father, Gustav Böhrnsen, a communist turned social democrat, was also an SPD politician and served as chairman of the SPD group in the Parliament of Bremen 1968-1971.[1] Jens Böhrnsen joined the SPD in 1967.[1] At the University of Kiel, he studied law, and concluded his studies with the first Staatsexamen in 1973, and the second Staatsexamen in 1977 at the University of Hamburg.[1] He worked as an assessor in Bremen's administration, thereafter as a judge for 17 years, before he was elected to the Parliament of Bremen (Bürgerschaft).[1]

Political career

In 1999, Böhrnsen was elected head of the SPD group of the Parliament of Bremen.[1] Bremen's legislative assembly decided to elect Böhrnsen as mayor after he had won the Social Democrat primary for the mayoralty, which had become vacant after incumbent Henning Scherf announced on 28 September 2005 that he intended to resign in December. On his election on 8 November 2005 as a mayor and head of senate of Bremen,[1] he took his oath of office.

Recently, Böhrnsen has been involved in the debate revolving around a modernization of Germany's constitution. In the process, he rejected demands for the state of Bremen to merge with Lower Saxony to form a new northern state (a unit within Germany's federal system) — a demand that had been making the rounds as Bremen is not only the smallest German state, but has also been saddled with an extraordinary amount of debt for the past 15 years. After the 2007 state elections, Böhrnsen abandoned the coalition with the Christian Democrats (CDU) and instead started a coalition with the Greens. He is longlisted for the 2008 World Mayor award.

As president of the Senate of Bremen, Böhrnsen was elected President of the German Bundesrat for the year 2009–2010, starting 1 November 2009.[1] This office rotates between the heads of government of the states of Germany following a defined schedule. According to the German constitution, article 57, the head of the Bundresrat is the designated substitute for the President of Germany.[1] When Horst Köhler resigned from the presidency on 31 May 2010, Böhrnsen assumed the functions of head of state of Germany until the election of a successor by a Federal Convention.[1][2] The successor was Christian Wulff, who assumed office upon his election on 30 June 2010.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Böhrnsen übernimmt Köhlers Amtsgeschäfte". Spiegel Online. 31 May 2010. Retrieved 31 May 2010.
  2. ^

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Henning Scherf
President of the Senate and
Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen

Succeeded by
Carsten Sieling
Preceded by
Peter Müller
President of the German Bundesrat
Succeeded by
Hannelore Kraft
1949 in Germany

Events in the year 1949 in the Allied-occupied Germany, then in West Germany and East Germany.

2006 in Germany

Events in the year 2006 in Germany.

2007 Bremen state election

State elections were held in the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen on 13 May 2007 to elect the Bürgerschaft (city and state legislature).

After the elections, Jens Böhrnsen, the SPD prime minister, was able to pick his future coalition partner. He could either continue the grand coalition with the CDU (since 1995) or form a red-green coalition (SPD and Greens). Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) was said to be annoyed that Böhrnsen hadn't opted for either a grand coalition or a red-green coalition before the election; she claimed that he "had to say how it should go on" with Bremen.[1]. This election is thought to be a landmark for The Left Party.PDS since it is their first success on state level in the former West. Negotiations on a red-green government began after the elections and were successfully concluded on 16 June 2007, resulting in the first red-green state government since the red-green coalition ended on the federal level.

2007 in Germany

Events in the year 2007 in Germany.

2008 in Germany

Events in the year 2008 in Germany.

2009 in Germany

Events in the year 2009 in Germany.

2011 Bremen state election

A Bremen state election was held on 22 May 2011, to elect the Bürgerschaft (city and state legislature). The Christian Democratic Union's slogan was "Now do the right thing." The Social Democratic Party and the Green Party wanted to continue their coalition. Nineteen parties and political associations were authorized to participate in the election. The Citizens' Party, German People's Union and Free Voters were the parties not eligible to be in the election.Sixteen- and seventeen-year-olds were able to vote for the first time in this election. There had also been a major change in the voting system: whereas until the 2007 election, Bremen voters had only one vote, and only had a choice between closed party lists, the new electoral law gave them five votes which they were able to distribute freely between party lists and individual candidates.

2015 Bremen state election

A Bremen state election were held on 10 May 2015, to elect the Bürgerschaft (state legislature) as well as the Bremische Stadtbürgerschaft and the Stadtverordnetenversammlung Bremerhaven (city legislatures).


Böhrnsen is a German language surname. Notable people with the name include:

Jens Böhrnsen (born 1949), German politician

Gustav Böhrnsen (1914–1998), German politician

Carsten Sieling

Carsten Günter Erich Sieling (born 13 January 1959) is a German politician of the SPD. He is currently the President of the Senate and Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen since 15 July 2015.Between 1996 and 2001, Sieling served on the board of the Bremen Consumer Association; from 1997, he was the chairman of the board.

German order of precedence

The German order of precedence is a symbolic hierarchy of the five highest federal offices in Germany used to direct protocol. It has no official status, but has been established in practical use.

The President of Germany, the head of state of Germany.

The President of the Bundestag, the speaker of the German parliament, the Bundestag.

The Chancellor of Germany, the head of the government of Germany.

(1.) The President of the Bundesrat, the speaker of the Bundesrat, a federal legislative chamber, in which the governments of the sixteen german states are represented. He or she is ex officio also deputy to the President of Germany (Basic Law, Article 57). Thus, he or she becomes first in the order, while acting on behalf of the President or while acting as head of state during a vacancy of the presidency.

The President of the Federal Constitutional Court, the supreme court of Germany.

Gustav Böhrnsen

Gustav Böhrnsen (24 January 1914 – 21 June 1998) was a German politician of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), who served as chairman of the SPD group in the Parliament of Bremen (the Bürgerschaft) from 1968 to 1971. He was elected to the Parliament of Bremen in 1955 and served as deputy chair of his party group 1966–1968, before being elected chair.

He was originally a member of the SPD, but in the 1930s, he became a member of the Socialist Workers' Party of Germany, the Young Communist League of Germany and the Communist Party of Germany. During the Nazi era, he was active in the anti-Nazi resistance, and was imprisoned from 1936 to 1939 as a political prisoner. In 1942, he was conscripted into the 999th Light Afrika Division, a penal military unit. He was taken prisoner of war by the Americans in 1943 and repatriated in 1946. After the war, he became a member of the SPD again and became active in the IG Metall union. He was elected chair of the works council of AG Weser, his employer, in 1951, and served in this capacity until 1979. The election of Böhrnsen, a social democrat, to this position, meant the communists were finally ousted from influence in the works council.He was the father of SPD politician Jens Böhrnsen, who would hold the same position as his father did and eventually become Mayor of Bremen.

A street in Bremen-Gröpelingen is named in his honour.

Karl Arnold

Karl Arnold (21 March 1901 – 29 June 1958) was a German politician. He was Minister President of North Rhine-Westphalia from 1947 to 1956. From 7 September 1949 until 8 September 1950 he was President of the German Bundesrat. He is, together with Jens Böhrnsen (in 2010) and Horst Seehofer (in 2012), one of the three Presidents of the Bundesrat who have acted as head of state during a vacancy of the office of President, according to Article 57 of the Basic Law.

List of heads of state of Germany

This is a list of the heads of state of Germany, from the Unification of Germany in 1871 to the present day.

From 1871 to 1918 the head of state was the Emperor, who was the same person as the King of Prussia according to the Constitution. Germany became a republic under the Constitution of 1919 and the monarch was replaced by a President with semi-presidential powers. In 1934 when President von Hindenburg died, Chancellor Adolf Hitler called for a referendum in 1934 which was to merge the offices of President and Chancellor, after the result he became Führer and Chancellor.

List of mayors of Bremen

The Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, which is one of the states of Germany, is governed by the Senate of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen. The Senate is chaired by the President of the Senate, who is the head of government of the city-state. The President of the Senate and another member of the senate both hold the title Mayor (Bürgermeister).

President of Germany

The President of Germany, officially the Federal President of the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Bundespräsident der Bundesrepublik Deutschland), is the head of state of Germany.

Germany has a parliamentary system of government in which the chancellor is the nation's leading political figure and de facto chief executive. The president has a mainly ceremonial role, but he can give direction to general political and societal debates and has some important "reserve powers" in case of political instability (such as those provided for by Article 81 of the Basic Law). The German presidents have wide discretion about how they exercise their official duties.Under Article 59 (1) of the Basic Law (German Constitution), the president represents the Federal Republic of Germany in matters of international law, concludes treaties with foreign states on its behalf and accredits diplomats. Furthermore, all federal laws must be signed by the president before they can come into effect, but usually they only veto a law if they believe it to violate the constitution.

The president, by their actions and public appearances, represents the state itself, its existence, legitimacy, and unity. The president's role is integrative and includes the control function of upholding the law and the constitution. It is a matter of political tradition – not legal restrictions – that the president generally does not comment routinely on issues in the news, particularly when there is some controversy among the political parties. This distance from day-to-day politics and daily governmental issues allows the president to be a source of clarification, to influence public debate, voice criticism, offer suggestions and make proposals. In order to exercise this power, they traditionally act above party politics.The 12th and current officeholder is Frank-Walter Steinmeier who was elected on 12 February 2017 and started his first five-year term on 19 March 2017.

Senate of Bremen

The Senate of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen (German: Senat der Freien Hansestadt Bremen) is the government of the German city-state Free Hanseatic City of Bremen. Various senate-like institutions have existed in Bremen since medieval times. The modern-day Senate is headed by a President, elected by the Parliament of Bremen, and the President's deputy, elected by the Senate. Both officials hold the title of Mayor. The position of President of the Senate corresponds to the position of Minister-President in most other states of Germany, while the senators are cabinet members similarly to ministers in other states.

From 2005 to 2015, Jens Böhrnsen served as President of the Senate and Mayor. In July 2015, Carsten Sieling became new President of the Senate and Mayor.

Theater Bremen

Theater Bremen (Bremen Theatre) is a state theatre in Bremen, Germany, with four divisions for opera, plays, dance, and student programs. Its venues are located in a city block, connected in architecture and seating up to 1,426 spectators. The theatre has drawn international attention since 1962 with innovative play productions in the Bremer Stil (Bremen style). Its opera company was selected as opera house of the year by Opernwelt in 2007.

Ulrich Nußbaum

Ulrich Nußbaum (born 10 April 1957) is a German politician who has been serving as State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy under the leadership of minister Peter Altmaier in the fourth coalition government of Chancellor Angela Merkel since 2018.

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