• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Steinbrück drops jobs but won't publish income

The Local · 2 Oct 2012, 09:47

Published: 02 Oct 2012 09:47 GMT+02:00

The 65-year-old Social Democrat (SPD) challenger to Chancellor Angela Merkel, Steinbrück was one of the best earners in parliament, the Frankfurter Rundschau said on Tuesday.

His parliamentary website states that, from paid speeches to banks, companies and insurance firms, the former finance minister has been earning well over €500,000 since 2009.

Steinbrück was chosen by the SPD to lead the election campaign against Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union last week. The decision was made earlier than planned after pressure increased from the regions for a choice between a trio of SPD leaders to be made.

Horst Seehofer, Bavarian state premier and head of Merkel’s sister party the Christian Social Union, called for Steinbrück to be transparent with his personal finances if that is what he demands from banks.

Steinbrück said he would not publish his income statements. “It is nobody’s business how much I donate from the fees,” he said.

Ulrich Maurer, deputy leader of the far left Linke parliamentary fraction called on Tuesday for a law to force Steinbrück to open his accounts to the public.

Someone who is paid more than €7,000 several times for a speech is hardly paid for those efforts, he told the Leipziger Volkszeitung. He said only Steinbrück and the tax office knew at the moment who paid him how much and for what.

Yet Steinbrück said he had always carefully registered and paid tax on his income - publishing what needed to be published according to parliamentary rules.

The one seat Steinbrück said he was not going to give up while fighting to become Germany’s leader was his seat on the supervisory board of Borussia Dortmund football club, which he said presented no conflict of interest.

Yet he said on Monday evening he was sorry that in 2006, while finance minister, he appealed to companies owned by the state to contribute millions of euros for a private chess tournament. Speaking on public broadcaster ARD, he said, “From today’s standpoint, I would not do it again. But at that time I did not have the impression that it was dubious or dishonourable.”

Story continues below…

He also said he could not step away from the raising of pension age from 65 to 67, despite the criticism of trade unions and left-wingers. “We will not be able to avoid the pressure from demographics... And in order to secure the financial basis of the social insurance system, we will need such changes,” he said.

The Local/DAPD/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

01:39 October 3, 2012 by herr_james
at least he was telling the truth about a humorous election campaign
Today's headlines
Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
File photo: DPA

When a man swimming naked in a Bavarian lake felt a strange pain in his nether regions, he looked up to see a fisherman on the shore. "Don’t pull!" he shouted.

Study finds rival Rhineland beers 'actually taste the same'
Left: Altbier. Right: Kölsch. Or can you even tell? Photos: DPA.

Cologne and Düsseldorf have a long established rivalry, not least over who has the better home brew. So the results of a new study might be more than they can swallow.

Eastern Europe pushes Germany for joint EU army
Angela Merkel (l), Beata Szydlo and Victor Orban. Photo: DPA

Eastern EU countries on Friday pushed for the bloc to create a joint army as they met with Germany for talks on sketching Europe's post-Brexit future.

Merkel’s party mate wants to get rid of all Karl Marx streets
Karl Marx and one of the roadways in Berlin named for him. Photos: Wikimedia Commons, Nicor

Hundreds of streets are named after the founder of communism, but this conservative politician wants to give Marx the boot.

State elections
6 reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
Photo: DPA

With state elections around the corner, The Local looks at the poor side of Germany's "poor but sexy" capital city.

Upstarts RB Leipzig plan to go right to top of Bundesliga
RB Leipzig players celebrate scoring against Dynamo Dresden. Photo: DPA

RB Leipzig make their Bundesliga debut on Sunday, but the East German outfit, sponsored by energy drinks manufacturer Red Bull, are already far from popular in Germany's top-flight.

Poland criticizes Germany’s 'self-serving' foreign policy
Witold Waszczykowski. Photo: DPA

The Polish foreign minister has said that Germany all too often follows its own interests at the expense of its partners, as Chancellor Angela Merkel prepares to visit Warsaw.

Vast majority of Germans in favour of burqa ban: poll
Women wearing niqab veils in Saudi Arabia. Photo: DPA.

A survey found that the vast majority of respondents were in favour of Germany passing a ban on the full-body veil sometimes worn by Muslim women.

Czech police detain driver for harassing Merkel's motorcade
Angela Merkel. File photo: DPA

Czech police arrested a man on Thursday for attempting to drive into the motorcade of visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Prague, they said.

Teacher convicted for holding kids back after class
Photo: DPA

A music teacher from North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) has been found guilty of "holding people against their will" after he made some naughty stay kids back after class.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Lifestyle
What's on in Germany: events for August 2016
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
International
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Features
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Features
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
8,614
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd