|Minister of Defence|
|Assumed office |
8 December 2021
|Preceded by||Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer|
|Minister of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth|
20 May 2021 – 8 December 2021
|Preceded by||Franziska Giffey|
|Succeeded by||Anne Spiegel|
|Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection|
27 June 2019 – 8 December 2021
|Preceded by||Katarina Barley|
|Succeeded by||Marco Buschmann|
|Parliamentary State Secretary in the Ministry of Finance|
14 March 2018 – 27 June 2019
Serving with Bettina Hagedorn
|Preceded by||Jens Spahn|
|Succeeded by||Sarah Ryglewski|
|Chief Whip of the Social Democratic Party in the Bundestag|
16 September 2013 – 27 September 2017
|Preceded by||Thomas Oppermann|
|Succeeded by||Carsten Schneider|
|Member of the Bundestag |
18 October 2005 – 26 October 2021
|Preceded by||multi-member district|
|Succeeded by||multi-member district|
|Constituency||Social Democratic Party List|
26 October 1998 – 18 October 2005
|Preceded by||Michael Meister|
|Succeeded by||Michael Meister|
|Born||19 June 1965|
Mannheim, West Germany (now Germany)
|Political party||Social Democratic Party (1982–)|
|Alma mater||University of Mannheim|
University of Mainz
Christine Lambrecht (born 19 June 1965) is a German lawyer and politician of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) who has been serving as the Federal Minister of Defence in the government of Chancellor Olaf Scholz since December 2021.
In the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel, Lambrecht previously served as Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection (2019–2021), Minister for Family Affairs (2021) and as one of two Parliamentary State Secretaries at the Federal Ministry of Finance (2018– 2019). Prior to that, she held various roles within the SPD parliamentary group, including as a deputy leader and Chief Whip.
Lambrecht attended the Albertus-Magnus-Gymnasium in Viernheim, in the German state of Hessen and in 1984 she passed her Abitur. After this she studied law at the Universities of Mannheim and Mainz, where she graduated in 1992 and completed an internship at State Court in Darmstadt.
Lambrecht joined the SPD in 1982 and was a member of the Viernheim City Council from 1985 till 2001, of which she was the chair in the years 1997 till 2001. Additionally she was a member of the Bergstraße County Council from 1989 until 1997.
Lambrecht first became a Member of the Bundestag in the 1998 elections. From 1998 until 2002 she was the member for Bergstraße, however, she lost against her CDU challenger in the 2002 federal election and has subsequently always been elected via the SPD Hessian state list. In parliament, she has served on the Committee on Legal Affairs, the Committee on Sports and on the Council of Elders, which sets the agenda for the parliamentary sessions. Lambrecht was seen as being on the left wing of the SPD parliamentary group.
From 2002 until 2005 and from 2013 until 2017, Lambrecht served on the parliamentary body in charge of appointing judges to the Highest Courts of Justice, namely the Federal Court of Justice (BGH), the Federal Administrative Court (BVerwG), the Federal Fiscal Court (BFH), the Federal Labour Court (BAG), and the Federal Social Court (BSG).
Following the 2009 elections, Lambrecht became her parliamentary group's spokesperson on legal affairs. In 2011, she was elected as a deputy leader of the SPD parliamentary group, under the leadership of chairman Frank-Walter Steinmeier. She was a deputy leader of the group till her election as Chief Whip of the SPD Parliamentary Group after the 2013 federal election. In the ensuing negotiations to form a third coalition government under Chancellor Angela Merkel, she was part of the SPD delegation in the working group on internal and legal affairs, led by Hans-Peter Friedrich and Thomas Oppermann.
In the negotiations to form Merkel’s fourth coalition government following the 2017 federal elections, Lambrecht was part of the working group on financial policies and taxes, led by Peter Altmaier, Andreas Scheuer and Olaf Scholz. In Merkel's fourth cabinet, she joined the federal government as one of two Parliamentary State Secretaries serving under Finance Minister Olaf Scholz.
On 19 June 2019 it was announced that Lambrecht would succeed justice minister Katarina Barley on the 1 July 2019, after the latter moved to Brussels to serve in the European Parliament.
During Lambrecht's time in office, German authorities fined Facebook 2 million euros for under-reporting complaints about illegal content on its social media platform in breach of the country’s law on internet transparency. In December 2019, she proposed a law requiring internet service providers like Gmail or WhatsApp to handover personal data including passwords upon request.
In response to the burning of an Israeli flag at a demonstration in 2017, Lambrecht led efforts in 2020 to make the destruction of foreign state flags, including that of the European Union, and the denigration of national anthems punishable by a fine and up to three years in prison.
In September 2020, Lambrecht announced that she would not stand in the 2021 federal elections but instead resign from active politics by the end of the parliamentary term.
In May 2021, Lambrecht additionally took on the portfolio of the Federal Minister for Family Affairs, Women, and Youth, after Franziska Giffey resigned in reaction to her plagiarism affair.
Lambrecht was named Federal Minister of Defence in the cabinet of Olaf Scholz, taking office on 8 December 2021.
Early in her tenure, Lambrecht oversaw efforts in 2022 to send up to 350 more German troops to Lithuania, reinforcing a German-led NATO Enhanced Forward Presence combat unit deployed there to deter a Russian attack. Also under her leadership, the ministry announced plans to purchase 35 Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fighter jets to replace its Panavia Tornado and to buy 60 Boeing CH-47 Chinook heavy transport helicopters worth around 5 billion euros ($5.40 billion).
In March 2022, Lambrecht was openly criticized by Mykhailo Podolyak, Adviser to the Ukrainian President, for openly saying that "NATO won't intervene in the Russo-Ukrainian War". Mr. Podolyak stated that each such statement encourages the Russian massacre in Ukraine.
After the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Germany delivered aid and weapons to Ukraine. Taken from the German Bundeswehr this included 3,000 Panzerfaust 3 anti-tank weapons, 500 Stinger anti-aircraft missile systems, over 2,000 9K32 Strela-2 anti-aircraft missile systems, 100 MG 3 machine guns, 16 million rounds of ammunitions, 23,000 combat helmets, 1,300 bullet-proof vests, night vision devices, 500,000 military food rations, 14 armored cars and other systems.
By April 2022, Lambrecht announced that the German army's stocks are depleted and additional deliveries have to come from the arms manufacturers directly.
In May 2022, Lambrecht led negotiations with fellow cabinet members Christian Lindner and Annalena Baerbock as well as Mathias Middelberg on securing a two-thirds majority in parliament needed to change Germany’s constitution to allow for a credit-based special defense fund of 100 billion euros ($107.35 billion).
Lambrecht has one son.
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