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Kriemhild Trattnig (1937 – )

Second President of the Provincial Parliament of Carinthia from 1989 to 1992

Chairwoman of the FPÖ Parliamentary Party in the Carinthian Provincial Parliament from 1986 to 1989

Provincial Member of Parliament, Carinthia from 1979 to 1992

Kriemhild Trattnig can be considered a pioneer of Freedom Party women’s policy. As chairwoman of the FPÖ parliamentary party in the Carinthian parliament and as Second President of the Carinthian provincial parliament, she also contributed to decisively shaping Freedom Party politics in Carinthia. She was the first woman to hold either post.

Short biography

Kriemhild Trattnig, née Huber, was born in Albeck, Carinthia, on 10 May 1937. Her father was the FPÖ politician Reinhold Huber, who owned a Gurktal sawmill. He was one of the co-founders of the League of Independents (VdU) and the first provincial party leader of the Carinthian Freedom Party. Her brother was Alois Huber, a long-serving FPÖ member of the National Council. After completing compulsory schooling, Trattnig attended, among other things, a home economics school for farmers in the German state of Schleswig-Holstein and then worked for several years as a seasonal cook in various tourist businesses. In 1959 she completed her vocational training in agriculture and became a (mountain) farmer.

Kriemhild Trattnig entered Carinthian politics in 1975 as the FPÖ’s provincial spokeswoman for women's affairs. In 1979 she entered the Carinthian parliament for the first time and was subsequently also the leader of the Freedom Party group in the Carinthian parliament. From the mid-1980s onwards, the Carinthian Freedom Party experienced rapid growth, and at the 1989 Carinthian provincial elections, the FPÖ broke the SPÖ's absolute majority and won 29 per cent of the vote. With eleven seats, the FPÖ was now the second strongest group in the Carinthian parliament. Jörg Haider was elected Governor with the support of the votes of the ÖVP’s MPs. Kriemhild Trattnig was appointed Second President of the Carinthian parliament. This was the first time in the history of the Carinthian parliament that a woman had been elected one of its presidents.

During her political career, Kriemhild Trattnig spoke up for the interests of families and pensioners, arguing that these matters should be seen from the perspective of an overarching "generational policy". Trattnig’s arguments in favour of material and non-material support for families were couched in the same context. Her demands included calls for fair funding to support the raising of children, or to provide care for relatives. Among Kriemhild Trattnig’s other key concerns were improving agricultural conditions and the social lot of women farmers.

At the 21st FPÖ federal party conference held in Bad Gastein in May 1992, disagreements arose between Kriemhild Trattnig and the party leadership under Jörg Haider. On 18 May 1992, Trattnig responded by resigning from the party and from her position as Second President of the Carinthian parliament. Following a reconciliation with the party leadership, she rejoined the FPÖ in August 1993, but no longer held political office. It was not until autumn 2002 that Kriemhild Trattnig spoke out again, on the occasion of the FPÖ’s “Knittelfeld” crisis, when she criticised above all the Carinthian Governor Jörg Haider, as well as the then Freedom Party leadership.

In 2005, Kriemhild Trattnig made a temporary return to the political stage. The occasion was the founding of the "Alliance for the Future of Austria" (Bündnis Zukunft Österreich, BZÖ) in April 2005. The whole Carinthian Freedom Party had joined the new party and was also in control of the Freedom Party group in the provincial parliament. The FPÖ only had one seat in the provincial parliament, namely that of Franz Schwager, and no longer received any public funding. To ensure the survival of an independent Carinthian FPÖ, Kriemhild Trattnig; her brother Alois Huber; former National Council member Otto Scrinzi and the publicist Andreas Mölzer, together founded the "Carinthian Freedom Party Platform for the Unity of the FPÖ" (Plattform Kärntner Freiheitliche für die Einheit der FPÖ). The Platform publicly distanced itself from Carinthian Governor Jörg Haider and demonstratively supported the FPÖ. The aim was to preserve the Carinthian provincial party as part of the federal FPÖ. This was subsequently achieved. In June 2005, the Carinthian FPÖ held a provincial party conference, at which Franz Schwager was elected chairman with around 92 per cent of the votes cast. A party headquarters was also set up in Klagenfurt.

Kriemhild Trattnig also campaigned for the Carinthian FPÖ at the 2006 National Council election. In addition, she was one of the group of prominent individuals who publicly supported Barbara Rosenkranz’s Freedom Party’s candidacy at the 2010 federal presidential election. Kriemhild Trattnig is, among other things, an honorary citizen of her Carinthian home town of Treffen.

Main political positions

1977–1981

Deputy Provincial Party Chairperson, FPÖ Carinthia

1979–1992

Municipal Councillor, Treffen

1979–1992

Provincial Member of Parliament, Carinthia

1986–1989

Chairwoman, FPÖ Parliamentary Party in the Carinthian Provincial Parliament

1989–1992

Second President, Provincial Parliament of Carinthia

 

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