Klaas de Vries (Labour Party)

Klaas de Vries (Labour Party)
This is a Dutch name; the family name is de Vries, not Vries.

Klaas George de Vries (28 April 1943 in Hoensbroek) is a Dutch politician. He was member of the Dutch House of Representatives for the PvdA between 1973 and 1988 and once more from 2002 and 2006. He was a Minister and was involved in forming both Kok cabinets. De Vries was member of the Senate between 2007 and 2015.[1]


Career before politics

After attending a protestant grammar school in the Catholic Heerlen between 1949 and 1955, De Vries attended to the Grotius College since 1955. He graduated Gymnasium-alpha in 1961. In the period 1961-62 he attended Hamline University in St. Paul (Minnesota, USA) where he studied Liberal Arts. In 1962 he returned to the Netherlands to study law at the University of Utrecht. He graduated in 1968. In the same year De Vries joined the PvdA. Between 1968 and 1971 De Vries worked for the ministry of Justice. Between 1970 and 1971 De Vries was member of the Delft City Council, for the PvdA. After the 1971 he became chairperson of the PvdA-branch in Delft. In 1971 De Vries became research fellow at the Erasmus University Rotterdam, researching Administrative Law.[1]

Political career

In 1973 De Vries gave up his scientific career to become a member of the Dutch House of Representatives. Initially De Vries was the Defense specialist of the parliamentary party. He was chairperson of the Defence Committee of parliament between 1978 and 1981. He also served in the North-Atlantic Assembly. Between 1981 and 1988 he was member of the board of the PvdA parliamentary party. From 1981 to 1985 he was active as vice-president and president of the Parliamentary Association for Euro-Arab Cooperation (PAEAC). Between 1981 and 1986 De Vries was member of the Presidium of the House. Between 1986 and 1988 he was vice-chairperson of parliamentary party. During this period De Vries also chaired the parliamentary research committee on building subsidies. In 1988 De Vries became director of the Association of Dutch Municipalities. In 1994 De Vries informateur of the first Kok cabinet. He became chair of the Social-Economic Council in 1996.[1]

In 1998 De Vries was informateur of the second Kok cabinet. In 1998 he became Minister of Social Affairs and Employment. When minister Apotheker left the cabinet in 1999, De Vries temporarily took over as Minister of Agriculture, Fishery and Environmental Conservation. In 2000, when minister Peper left the cabinet, De Vries became Minister of Home Affairs. As Minister of Home Affairs, De Vries initiated several government reform programs. Nationally he initiated the temporary referendum law. Locally he was responsible for the revision of the number of municipalities, the revision of the system of municipal government (the 'dualisering') and the constitutional revision that would allow an elected mayor. In 2002 De Vries returned to parliament. He contested in the 2002 PvdA leadership election, which he lost to Wouter Bos. He entered originally because no one would oppose Bos, who was sure to win. In parliament De Vries plays a leading role in Home Affairs and Government Reform. He chairs the Parliamentary Committee which revises the parliamentary research procedures and the PvdA Committee on democratic renewal.[1]


De Vries was appointed an Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau on 10 December 2002[2] He is also a Knight of the Order of the Dutch Lion.[2]


  1. 1 2 3 4 "Prof.Mr. K.G. (Klaas) de Vries". www.parlement.com. Retrieved December 16, 2010.
  2. 1 2 "Professor KG de Vries (PvdA)". www.eerstekamer.nl. Retrieved December 16, 2010.
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