Denmark’s grand old man at Christiansborg: Bertel Haarder sets new record – The Post

Denmark’s grand old man at Christiansborg: Bertel Haarder sets new record

Dignitaries out in force to celebrate legend’s 7,933 days in ministerial office

PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen was among the dignitaries (photo: Hasse Ferrold)
October 6th, 2016 10:50 am| by Christian W
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When the culture minister, Bertel Haarder, shows up for work at Parliament today, he will break the record for the longest tenure as a minister in Denmark since the political system changed back in 1901.

Haarder, who has held four ministerial positions since 1982 when he first became the education minister, has been a Danish minister for a total of 7,833 days over the course of his political career – one day more than the former agriculture minister and previous record holder, Kirsten Bording.



“Democracy is not a political regime, but some times somebody has to cut through, and I’ve had that privilege for 22 years in total,” said Harder.

“There are probably some who think it’s more than enough – but think of Fidel Castro, Robert Mugabe and the French Sun King [Louis XIV]. I’m an inconsequential greenhorn compared to them. Or as Grundtvig said: ‘Old age is no crime, when one turns grey with honour.’ So the record … it will be celebrated!”

READ MORE: Danish government allocates millions for research in culture and sport

Copenhagen mayor Franks Jensen getting in the mix (photo: Hasse Ferrold)
Copenhagen mayor Franks Jensen getting in the mix (photo: Hasse Ferrold)

Many years to go
And celebrated he was. Dignitaries were out in force yesterday at Thorvaldsens Museum to celebrate Haarder, who just turned 72 last month.

And really, Denmark’s political stalwart should have plenty of good years left to further build up his impressive longevity record – Mugabe and Castro are both still going strong in their 90s.

Dansk Folkeparti's grand old lady Pia Kjærsgaard (photo: Hasse Ferrold)
Dansk Folkeparti’s grand old lady Pia Kjærsgaard (photo: Hasse Ferrold)

Bertel Haarder's time as minister:


Culture and church minister: June 28, 2015 – ?

Internal affairs and health minister: February 23, 2010 – October 3, 2011

Education minister and minister for Nordic co-operation: November 23, 2007 – February 23, 2010

Education and church minister: February 18, 2005 – November 23, 2007

Integration and development minister: August 2, 2004 – February 18, 2005

Integration minister: January 1, 2003 – August 2, 2004

Integration and European affairs minister: November 27, 2001 – January 1, 2003

Education and research minister: September 10, 1987 – January 25, 1993

Education minister: September 10, 1982 – September 10, 1987