Éric Stauffer

Éric Roger Stauffer (born 24 October 1964) is a Swiss politician, and a cofounder of the Geneva Citizens' Movement (MCG).

Early life and family

Stauffer was born in Caprioli on 24 October 1964, to a Genevan father and an Italian-born mother, and grew up in Homberg, Bern. He married when he was 21, and married his current wife when he was 38. He has two children. His wife was born in Mauritius, and he has Italian and Mauritian as well as Swiss citizenship.[1][2]

Professional career

Following his governmental career, Stauffer went into business, but all three of the businesses he was involved in starting went bankrupt: UFIP Union Financière Privée SA in 1997,[2] Erton Assets Management SA in 2002,[3] and Cipka SA in 2003.[4] The company Investraders SA, which hired him in 2002, was ordered to be liquidated by the Federal Banking Commission for illegal conduct and declared bankrupt in 2003.[5][6] During the investigation, Stauffer was remanded in custody for 21 days.[7] Despite this, Stauffer has said he has "reached the top" at everything he has done.[8]

Currently, Stauffer is a member of the board of the university hospitals of Geneva[9] and of Geneva International Airport.[10]

Political career

Stauffer was a member of the Liberal Party in the 1990s, and joined the Democratic Union of the Centre (UDC) in early 2005. After a few weeks, he left, and started a new party called the Mouvement blochérien genevois along with Georges Letellier on 6 June. The party's original name was after the popular Zürich UDC politician Christoph Blocher, but Blocher refused to have his name associated with the party, so it was changed to the current Mouvement citoyens genevois.[11] Stauffer served as a member of the executive board of his party, until elected as party president in February 2008. He was replaced as party president by Roger Golay in April 2012.[12] The MCG claims to be neither right- nor left-wing, although most of its positions are to the right of other Swiss parties. It campaigns on a platform of opposition to the purported political class, and of priority allocation of jobs to Swiss citizens rather than cross-border commuters.[13][14][15]

Stauffer was elected to the Grand Council of Geneva in October 2005. In November 2005, he unsuccessfully ran for the Council of State, but came ahead of the two UDC candidates by thousands of votes.[16] In October 2009, Stauffer was reelected as the leader of the party list. The Geneva Citizens' Movement doubled its representation and became the third party of the canton.[17] In November, Stauffer and Mauro Poggia ran for the Council of State on the MCG ticket, but only Poggia was elected.[18] Stauffer ran unsuccessfully again in February 2012, as his party's candidate for the Council of State seat vacated by the resignation of Mark Muller.[19] In November 2013, Stauffer was among three MCG candidates for the Council of State,[20] but only the incumbent Poggia was elected.[21]

During his time on the Grand Council, Stauffer has earned a reputation for being a "bagarreur", a brawler.[1] In 2006, he attacked Councillor of State Micheline Spoerri, saying that Swiss drivers were being unfairly treated relative to cross-border commuters. His party filed a motion complaining that there were 120,000 parking fees unpaid by cross-border commuters, and that Spoerri and her administration were covering this up. In response, Spoerri filed a suit against him, which she later dropped.[22] In December 2005, Stauffer, Golay, and Henry Rappaz were expelled from a meeting of the Grand Council, for behavior disrespectful to Councillor of State Charles Beer and other members. In protest, all but one of the MCG members left the chamber.[23] In a similar case in 2009, Stauffer was called to order by the Grand Council president for carrying a revolver to committee meetings.[24] In February 2011, Stauffer was in an altercation at the bar of the Grand Council with Green Party member Roberto Broggini. Both ended up in hospital, blaming the other and claiming the other was intoxicated; other members who were witnesses claimed that both were intoxicated, but Stauffer more so. In the end, both were banned from the bar until April.[25][26] In February 2012, during a debate over the CEVA rail project, to which Stauffer has been a longtime opponent, he tried to get a committee to vote on a measure without debate, and was stopped by PLR member Pierre Weiss. During the argument that followed, Stauffer emptied his glass of water at Weiss. While Weiss received a warning, Stauffer was sanctioned and banned from committees for five months. Stauffer appealed this decision, but the Grand Council indicated it would be willing to take the issue to court if Stauffer persisted.[27][28]

Stauffer was elected to the administrative board of his municipality, Onex, in 2011, having run unsuccessfully in 2007, and he served as Onex's mayor in 2013–2014.[29]


  1. 1 2 Mendicino, Fedele; Citroni, Fabiano (18 May 2012). "Eric Stauffer, le bagarreur de la politique genevoise". Tribune de Genève (in French).
  2. 1 2 UFIP Union Financière Privée SA (Registre du commerce)
  3. Erton Assets Management SA (moneyhouse)
  4. Cipka SA (moneyhouse)
  5. Investraders International Corporation (Registre du commerce)
  6. Investraders SA (Registre du commerce)
  7. "Le paquet de cigarettes touche à sa fin". Tribune de Genève (in French). 1 November 2004.
  8. Baumann, Patrick (27 May 2009). "Son ring, c'est Genève !". L'Illustré (in French) (22). Archived from the original on 3 June 2009.
  9. Membres du conseil d'administration des Hôpitaux universitaires de Genève
  10. Conseil d'administration de Genève Aéroport
  11. Gani, Cynthia; Moro, Sandra (5 November 2008). "Éric Stauffer, l'urticaire de la République". Le Temps (in French).
  12. "Roger Golay remplace Éric Stauffer à la tête du MCG". Tribune de Genève. 28 April 2012.
  13. "Les populistes brillent aux élections genevoises" (in French). Swissinfo. 11 October 2009.
  14. Troubnikoff, Alexandra. "Suisse: la droite dure franchit la "ligne rouge" contre les voisins français" (in French). Agence France-Presse.
  15. "Grand Conseil genevois: la déferlante MCG" (in French). Télévision Suisse Romande. 11 October 2009.
  16. Résultats de l'élection du Conseil d'État du 13 novembre 2005 (État de Genève)
  17. Résultats des élections cantonales de 2009 (État de Genève)
  18. Résultats de l'élection du Conseil d'État du 15 novembre 2009 (État de Genève)
  19. Jan-Hess, Isabel (29 February 2012). "Éric Stauffer plébiscité par les siens". Tribune de Genève (in French).
  20. Francey, Olivier (10 June 2013). "Le MCG lancera trois candidats dans la course au Conseil d'État". Tribune de Genève (in French).
  21. Résultats des élections cantonales de 2013 (État de Genève)
  22. "Micheline Spoerri porte plainte contre Éric Stauffer" (in French). Mouvement citoyens genevois. Agence télégraphique suisse. 10 April 2006.
  23. Bach, Philippe (10 December 2008). "Le MCG se pose en victime mais est dépeint en arroseur arrosé". Le Courrier (in French).
  24. Moulin, Marc (2 June 2009). "Privé d'arme au parlement, le député Éric Stauffer pourrait y être fouillé". Tribune de Genève (in French).
  25. Citroni, Fabiano (20 February 2011). "Stauffer et Broggini : leur embrouille finit à l'hôpital". Le Matin (in French).
  26. "Éric Stauffer et Roberto Broggini interdits de buvette jusqu'à fin avril". Tribune de Genève. 17 March 2011.
  27. Citroni, Fabiano (28 February 2012). "Exclu des commissions parlementaires pendant cinq mois, Éric Stauffer riposte". Tribune de Genève (in French).
  28. Décision du Grand Conseil relative à l'opposition de M. Éric Stauffer contre la décision du Bureau du 28 février 2012 (État de Genève)
  29. Conseil administratif d'Onex

External links

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