Visit to the Bundesrat - 1st Jour Fixe, 10 October, 2016
The first Jour Fixe of the 2016/17 club year took a large group from Willkommen in Berlin to the Bundesrat, the upper house of the German parliament, on Leipziger Strasse in central Berlin. The ladies and gentlemen in attendance were greeted by the Deputy Secretary General, Dr. Georg Kleemann, who elucidated the Bundesrat's history and operations in the plenary hall.
In three English and German-speaking groups, WiB discovered the building: the reception rotunda with a suspended work of art by Rebekka Horn; the wing housing portraits of the politicians who have been prime ministers of the Länder since 1949 and who, since that time, have headed the Chamber; and the only remaining room that still bears traces of war damage on its walls.
It became clearer and clearer to both the international guests and the German visitors how important a two-chamber system was to the Federal Republic of Germany's founding fathers, having experienced Nazi dictatorship.