|Estimated value:||€1.5 million|
|Country of origin:||Germany|
|Source of Wealth:||Entrepreneurs, politicians|
Christian Lindner (born January 7, 1979 in Wuppertal) is a German politician, member of the state parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia and leader of the FDP.
Christian Lindner was born in Wuppertal. His father, Wolfgang Lindner, teaches mathematics and computer science at the Wermelskirchen high school. After graduating from high school in 1998 and doing community service, he studied political science at the University of Bonn from 1999 to 2006.
After eleven semesters he received his Master of Arts (MA). The main topic of his master’s thesis was: “Tax competition and income distribution. Can a financial constitution be reformed? “In 2006 he began writing a dissertation under the supervision of Professor of Political Science Frank Decker, which he has still not completed due to his political activities.
During his studies, Lindner fulfilled his civil duties as a reserve officer in the Luftwaffe. In 2002 he was awarded the rank of lieutenant in the reserve. In 2008 he was Air Force Liaison Officer at Ground Command in Düsseldorf and since September 2011 he has been a Captain in Reserve.
Lindner joined the FDP in 1995. He had been a member of the FDP board of directors in North Rhine-Westphalia since 1998 and became Secretary General in 2004 (until February 2010). In the state elections in May 2000, the 21-year-old Lindner was elected the youngest member of parliament. First he was “spokesman for family and integration” and then from 2005 to 2009 deputy chairman of the FDP parliamentary group in parliament and spokesman for innovation, science and technology. In 2007 he also became a member of the Executive Council of the FDP at federal level.
Lindner has been a member of the German Bundestag since 2009. During the negotiations to form a coalition government after the federal elections in 2009, he was part of the FDP delegation in the working group on family, immigration and cultural integration, headed by Maria Bemer and Hans-Joachim Otto. From December 2009 until his unexpected resignation in December 2011, Lindner was also Secretary General of the FDP at federal level under the leadership of party leader Philipp Rösler. His resignation was caused by a forced internal party vote.
Lindner was later elected leader of the FDP in North Rhine-Westphalia ahead of the 2012 state election, replacing Daniel Bar. In the election, the FDP received 8.6 percent of the vote, beating all expectations. After the party won the election, he was elected chairman of the FDP parliamentary group in the state parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia, replacing Gerhard Papke on May 15, 2012. After the resignation of chairman Philipp Rösler after the 2013 federal election, Linder was elected the new chairman of the FDP, in which the FDP was unable to clear the 5% hurdle for the Bundestag for the first time since 1949.
In the run-up to the 2014 European elections, Lindner and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte acted as “mediators” between Olli Rehn and Guy Verhofstadt in the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe with candidates for the presidency of the European Commission. Together they agreed with Verhrfstad to conduct ALDE election campaigns to try to succeed Jose Manuel Barroso. By this time, Linder was well known as a fellow at Rena.
Lindner was an FDP delegate in the Federal Assembly for the election of the German president in 2017, where he supported government candidate Frank-Walter Steinmeier. In the same year, he led his party’s successful campaign in the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia, which brought the FDP back into the state parliament. Linder himself decided not to hold an office in the new government.
Lindner’s passionate responses and heckling, defending entrepreneurs and start-up culture made newspaper front pages in early 2015 and became one of the most-watched political facts of the time. Lindner was addressing the state parliament in North Rhine-Westphalia about the importance of entrepreneurship and how failed entrepreneurs deserve a second chance, when a Social Democrat member in the audience asked: “That [Scheitern] is something you have experience in.” A reference to an Internet company co-founded by Lindner that failed after the dot-com bubble burst in the early 2000s. Lindner responded with a two and a half minute tirade. “If you succeed you end up in the sights of the social democratic redistribution machinery and if you fail you can be sure of ridicule,” he replied, noting that this member prefers a secure job. He had been working for charity all his life instead of daring to start a company.
Bild, the daily newspaper with the highest circulation in Germany, praised Lindner on its front page. The Berlin daily Tagesspiegel said the chimpanzee offered a welcome contrast to the “persistent fog of no-alternative Merkelism” that characterized the Bundestag debate.
Shortly after the 2017 election, Lindner ruled out taking on new debt to manage the balancing act between cutting income taxes and increasing investment in digital infrastructure. He criticized outgoing finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble for not being tough enough on Greece and not cutting income taxes for middle-class workers.
In 2011, Lindner married the journalist Dagmar Rosenfeld; they had started dating in 2009. On April 19, 2018, they announced their separation. In 2018 he started dating journalist Franca Lehfeldt.
|Estimated value:||€1.5 million|