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Ursula Stenzel

Ursula Stenzel

Austrian politician
Ursula Stenzel
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro Austrian politician
Is Journalist Television presenter Politician News presenter
From Austria
Type Film, TV, Stage & Radio Journalism Politics
Gender female
Birth 22 September 1945, Vienna
Age 75 years
Star sign VirgoVirgo
Spouse: Heinrich Schweiger
Ursula Stenzel
The details


Ursula Stenzel (born September 22, 1945 in Leopoldstadt, Vienna) is an Austrian politician who was a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) from 1996 to 2006. Until September 2015, she was a member of the Austrian People's Party. She is also a former member of the bureau of the European People's Party, and sat on the European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs.
She is also chair of the delegation for relations with the Korean Peninsula, a member of the Subcommittee on Security and Defence, and a substitute for the Committee on Budgetary Control and the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs.
Since 2005, Stenzel has been Bezirksvorsteherin (district mayor) of Innere Stadt, Vienna's downtown district. She stepped down after the 2015 elections and was succeeded by Markus Figl (ÖVP).


Stenzel was born in a Catholic family of Jewish descent. Her father was engineer of the North railway. Her mother was the daughter of a rabbi and chazzan in the Rotensterngasse, Leopoldstadt.


  • Studied journalism, political science and modern history
  • Journalist and presenter at ORF (1972–1999)
  • Member of the European Parliament
  • Delegation member, EU-Poland Joint Parliamentary Committee (1997–2002)
  • Delegation Chair, EU-Czech Republic Joint Parliamentary Committee (2002–2004)
  • Schuman Prize


Protests against about fixed closing hours

Stenzel has been criticised by local and national artists for her conservative positions and most notably for her outspoken support of a closing hour in Vienna's 1'st district ("Innere Stadt"). This culminated in a satirical video which covered the Duck Sauce hit "Barbra Streisand". This video became known as Ursula Stressned (Ursula don't stress) and gained wide popularity within days and became a YouTube fad.

Switch to Austrian Freedom Party

Shortly before the 2015 Vienna Elections, Stenzel switched from the christian-conservative Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) to the right-populist Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ), because the ÖVP executive committee had decided not to endorse her district mayor candidacy for another term. However, the FPÖ came only in third, with the ÖVP getting the relative majority of the First-District vote.

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