Maximilian Krah: “Schampus Max” and right-wing climber

Maximilian Krah: “Schampus Max” and right-wing climber

Until recently, Maximilian Krah was considered one of the most influential figures in the AfD. After allegations of corruption and suspicion of espionage against an employee, he is now increasingly becoming a problem for his own party. A short portrait.

Maximilian Krah is coming under increasing pressure. The arrest and espionage affair of one of his employees comes at a bad time for the AfD leading candidate shortly before the European elections on June 9th (). Critical voices are now increasing even from within our own party. The corruption allegations against Krah and the suspicion of espionage against his employee Jian G. are just the latest entries on a long list of scandals.

Maximilian Krah was born in Saxony in 1977. His mother was a special school teacher, father Peter Krah worked as an engineer during the GDR era; later after reunification as a consultant in the Saxon Ministry of the Interior. The young Maximilian grew up in Dresden, graduated from high school there, studied law and received his doctorate at the TU Dresden. He then studied a Master of Business Administration at the London Business School and the Columbia Business School in New York.

Until a few years ago, the now 47-year-old also worked as a partner in a law firm in Dresden. There he represented, among other things, the men who tied an Iraqi refugee to a tree in front of a supermarket in Arnsdorf, Saxony, in 2016. He was also the house lawyer for the Pius Brotherhood, a fundamentalist and ultra-conservative organization within the Catholic Church. Since the beginning of this year, Krah has no longer acted as a lawyer. He himself claims that he returned the license due to lack of time.

Maximilian Krah: Switch from CDU to AfD

Maximilian Krah’s steep political career began parallel to his time as a lawyer. In 2016 he left the CDU after 25 years. According to her own statement, the reason for this was Angela Merkel’s refugee policy. Krah explained in public appearances that he had become more “national” over the years because things were getting worse for the Germans. A short time later he switched to the AfD.

There, Krah spread questionable theories about mass immigration and gender roles and repeatedly denigrated minorities such as refugees and parts of the LGBTQ+ community. The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution has already classified some of his statements as ethnic-nationalist, Islamophobic, xenophobic and anti-constitutional. In 2018, according to the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Krah supported the “One Percent” group, which was classified as right-wing extremist. He also maintains contacts with the right-wing extremist think tank “Institute for State Policy” and the Identitarian Movement.

Krah wrote down his extreme attitudes in a “manifesto” this year. In it he propagates a mass “remigration of those who are not willing or able to integrate”. This could be achieved by dismantling the welfare state, investing in countries of origin and “enforcing German culture”.

He also represents his ethnic view of population policy when dealing with political competition. He accused a German minister of making the government “more culturally African” because of people like her. Furthermore, he claimed: “Corruption correlates with culture and culture correlates with ethnicity.” His party never drew any conclusions afterwards.

The “Schampus-Max” from Dresden moves to Strasbourg

With his right-wing populist stance, Krah finds favor in the right-wing political camp. Even if he visually distinguishes himself from his potential electorate with his expensive watches and stylish suits. Krah feels comfortable among the Dresden bourgeoisie, appears on social media at balls and posts photos from expensive restaurants. Party friends therefore also call him “Schampus Max”.

In May 2019, Krah entered the European Parliament as a member. There he was suspended twice in just five years by his “Identity and Democracy” faction. He was first accused of a lack of political loyalty in 2022. At the beginning of 2023, corruption investigations came into play for the first time. His pro-Russia and pro-China stances also repeatedly cause a stir. In 2019, for example, he voted against a resolution against the Chinese oppression of the Uyghurs.

Despite everything, Krah was elected as the AfD’s top candidate for the 2024 European elections with a clear majority at the European Party conference in Magdeburg in July 2023. Despite the espionage affair, he will probably stay that way for the time being, but more in the background. The two party leaders Alice Weidel and Tino Chrupalla are said to have asked him to stay away from the start of the election campaign. From being the top candidate with a lot of tailwind, Krah has probably become a burden on his own party.

Sources: (I), (II), , , ,

Source: Stern

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