Photo from ADR website made by Alain Piron

Alternative Democratic Reform Party — Alternativ Demokratesch Reformpartei (ADR)

In this article, we will take a closer look at the Democratic Party of Luxembourg, analyzing its structure, leadership, current political stance on key issues and historical evolution.

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The Alternative Democratic Reform Party, known as ADR, stands as a distinctive force in Luxembourg's political landscape. Established in 1987 with a singular mission to advocate for pension parity between public servants and private-sector employees, the ADR has evolved into a social-conservative and national-conservative political entity with populist leanings.

ADR party at a glance

What distinguishes the ADR from other political groups in Luxembourg is its journey from a single-issue platform to a comprehensive conservative agenda. While initially focusing on pension reform, the party's political successes necessitated the development of stances on a wide array of public policy matters. As a result, it has embraced positions favoring economic liberalism and it is the largest party in Luxembourg to adopt a softly Eurosceptic stance.

As of today, the Alternativ Demokratesch Reformpartei commands 4 seats out of 60 in the Chamber of Deputies, positioning itself as the fifth-largest party in terms of parliamentary representation.

4 seats
holds ADR
21 seats
holds CSV
10 seats
holds LSAP

The ADR is tied to a labor union, called Neutral Union of Luxembourg Workers (NGL), the third-largest general trade union in the country. The party is supported both by the older generation and younger people with low income.


Political Guide

Structure and representativeness

The Alternative Democratic Reform Party (ADR) in Luxembourg is a political force characterized by its organizational depth and grassroots presence. With a membership base of approximately 1,800 individuals, it ranks as the fourth-largest party in terms of membership within the country's political landscape. At the helm of the ADR stands Fred Keup, who serves as the party's president, guiding its direction and representing its core principles.

The ADR's organizational framework is robust, comprising both national bodies and local structures, along with a unique division known as ADR Fraen (ARD Women). In addition, there is also a youth group called ADRenalin, founded in 1999, which acts as an independent entity.

The inner life of a party

At the national level, the party's decision-making apparatus consists of three key components.

The highest decision-making body within the ADR, the National Congress convenes annually and includes all party members. The date, time, and location of the Congress are determined by the National Committee. Here, critical policy decisions and party strategies are debated and finalized.
National Committee
Responsible for the efficient management of the party, both administratively and politically, the National Committee oversees program implementation and the execution of resolutions passed by the Congress. It reports exclusively to the National Congress and is composed of the national president, vice president, secretary-general, general treasurer, five district delegates, parliamentary representatives, European parliamentarians, government members, the honorary president, and the honorary secretary-general.
Executive Committee
The ADR is divided into four party districts, aligned with the four national electoral districts. Local district executives have the autonomy to support and facilitate the establishment of party sections at municipal or regional levels. These districts and sections play a crucial role in grassroots organizing, engaging in political activities in line with the party's ethos, caring for party members and supporters within their geographical scope, and encouraging their participation in the party's political life.

Electoral system divides the country into four constituencies. The number of seats allocated to each constituency is proportional to its population

seats in the South
seats in the Center
seats in the North
seats in the East

People and influence in the party

Key personnel profiles

Within the Luxembourg ADR party, a constellation of individuals holds pivotal roles across various spheres, contributing to the party's direction and influence. Let's explore the prominent figures in the ADR, classifying them according to their respective fields of action.

Leaders of the party

Fred Keup
A Luxembourgish teacher, who emerged as a political figure during his participation in the 2015 Constitutional referendum: he advocated against granting voting rights to foreigners for the national parliament. Widely respected for his advocacy for the Luxembourgish language and multilingualism, he secured a seat in the Chamber of Deputies in October 2020. By March 2022, he was elected as the president of ADR.
Dan Hardy
A notable journalist from Luxembourg and an RTL reporter, he dedicated 17 years to journalism before transitioning into politics. He now holds the position of Vice-President in the ADR party.
Pierrette Koehler
A mother and active political figure in Bettembourg municipality since 2017. In 2018 she represented ADR as a member of Sport Comission at the local level. Since 2021, she holds a position of Vice-President of the party alongside Hardy, Schoos, Weidig.
Alexandra Schoos
Veterenarian at Laboratoire de Médecine Vétérinaire de l'Etat. Currently serves as a Vice-President of the ADR party alongside Hardy, Koehler, Weidig.
Tom Weidig
A Doctor in quantum physics, renowned researcher, and former youth world chess champion from Luxembourg. He currently holds the position of Vice-President in the ADR party, serving alongside Hardy, Koehler, and Schoos.
Show all

Other key members of the party

Alex Penning
Secretary-General of the party
Detlef Xhonneux
Treasurer of ADR
Gast Giberyen
Honorary President of the party
Roby Mehlen
Honorary President of the party

The ADR isn't included in the present Bettel II government coalition. As a result, none of its members occupy ministerial roles in the administration. In last Chamber elections in 2018 the ADR has secured 7% share of the votes.

Participation graphs by Luxtoday. Information source: Wikipedia

The Luxembourg ADR holds a significant presence in the Chamber of Deputies, it ranked as the fifth-largest party with 4 seats out of 60 after the 2018 legislative elections. However, due to natural movements in the political world and the personal circumstances of the deputies, there are currently only three deputies: Fernand Kartheiser, Jeff Engelen, and Fred Keup.

There are 705 seats in the European Parliament.

These seats are divided among member countries based on their population size.

6 seats
are granted to the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in the European Parliament
96 seats
are held by Germany, the most populous EU state, and the neighbor of the GDL

ADR’s current political stance

In the political spectrum, the Luxembourg ADR party is situated towards the right and the party is commonly described as nationally conservative and economically liberal.

The party and its cornerstones

The party has undergone a notable evolution since its founding as a single-issue party dedicated to achieving pension equality between the public and private sectors. Over its initial decade, the ADR party effectively made pension reform its central campaign focus, achieving significant success by compelling the government to address most of its demands by 1998.

Party views visualization

The political landscape is rather diverse in Luxembourg. Information source:
The ADR party is quite independent and self-confident
The party advocates for economic liberalism and has positioned itself to fill the void left by the Democratic Party.
Alternative Democratic Reform party strives to protect natural rights of the family and roots against surrogancy, etc.
The ADR shares slight Eurosceptic position with the far left and is considered the most sovereigntist party in the country.
Declaration of Principles
The ADR has outlined a set of principles that guide its policy priorities, such as commitment to human rights and individual freedoms.

Rather than resting on its laurels, the ADR has diversified its policy platform to encompass a broad spectrum of public policy areas.

In the 2004 European elections, the party initially backed the proposed European Constitution. However, by spring 2005, due to internal pressures, the party changed its stance. The ADR's primary concerns about the European Union revolve around perceived shortcomings in democracy and transparency.

Political program

The Alternative Democratic Reform Party has laid out its key priorities for the upcoming legislative elections, focusing on pivotal areas such as population and growth, security, taxation, family, housing, language, and pensions. You can download the full ADR program on their website and here, we present a condensed summary of the ADR's political program.

Population and growth

Party representation

The Luxembourg ADR party exhibits a unique and multifaceted base of support, representing a spectrum of interests that distinguish it within Luxembourg's political landscape.

Electorate demographics

The party is popular among various important members of the society
Conservative voters
Anti-immigration voters
Retirees and pensioners

Historically, the ADR has found its strongest support among traditional, rural, and right-leaning voters, often drawing voters from the right-wing of the Christian Social People's Party (CSV). Its historical stronghold lies in the northern regions of Luxembourg; however, the party achieved its highest share of the vote in the Eastern constituency during the 2013 elections.

While the ADR's initial focus on pension equality solidified its base among pensioners, it has also resonated with a surprising number of young voters under the age of 24. The party's presence on the internet has further bolstered its appeal among young demographics, despite the leadership's limited focus on online engagement. The ADR finds popularity among individuals earning less than 30,000 euros annually, attracting those who may have felt excluded from recent economic growth. Similar to CSV and LSAP, it garners support from individuals with lower educational backgrounds.

Photo from ADR website
ADR party in comparison
Trade unionsNoNoYesYes
The ADR's office is located in Berdorf

Brief history of the party

The ADR Party of Luxembourg has a rich history spanning several decades. It was established in 1987, evolving through various political landscapes.

Emergence of the party: 1987-1991

Activity Committee 5/6 Pension for Children in 1987. Upscaled image from the ADR website.
  • March 28, 1987: A manifestation in Luxembourg City protests disparities between public sector officials' pension scheme and the basic state pension for all.
  • May 12, 1987: The party is founded as the Action Committee 5/6ths Pensions for Everyone.
  • 1989: The ADR's remarkable success in the legislative elections, winning 7.3% of the vote and four seats, prompts a shift in strategy.
  • November 12, 1989: The party's name changes to Action Committee 5/6ths
  • Spring 1991: Josy Simon switches to the Democratic Party, causing the ADR to lose one of its deputies.

Entrance to the Parliament: 1998-2010

  • August 3, 1998: A law is enacted to harmonize pension provisions between public sector employees and other workers, aligning with the ADR's original mission.
  • 1999: The ADR gains momentum, receiving 9.4% of the vote and seven seats in the legislative elections.
  • October 1999: ADR candidates secure positions in ten municipalities, with two winners in Luxembourg City and Esch-sur-Alzette.
  • 2004: The ADR loses two parliamentary seats, falling below 10% of the vote.
  • 2005 Eurosceptic stance: The ADR actively campaigns against the European Constitution, which narrowly passed with 56.5% of the vote.
  • April 2, 2006: The party's name changes again to its current name of Alternative Democratic Reform Party”, dropping references to pension reform.
  • May 1: Aly Jaerling leaves the party, leading to its loss of parliamentary group status.
  • May 29, 2008: ADR deputies, along with Jaerling, are the only members not to vote in favor of the Lisbon Treaty.
  • 2009: The ADR retains four seats but sees a reduced vote share of 8.1%.

Current events and challenges: 2010 to now

  • June 8, 2010: The ADR joins the Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe, a Eurosceptic political party.
  • 2013: The ADR's vote share decreases further from 8.14% to 6.64%, but the party regains a seat.
  • 2015: The ADR campaigns against three referendum questions, marking a significant political victory.
  • March 2, 2018: The ADR announces cooperation with the Wee 2050 - Nee 2015 citizen movement.
  • COVID-19 pandemic: The ADR opposes government health measures, citing concerns over individual freedoms.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Where does The ADR stand on the political spectrum

Whom does the ADR primarily represent in terms of its voter base

What are the core principles and values of the ADR party in Luxembourg

What role does the ADR play in European politics

We took photos from these sources: ADR website; ADR Facebook official page; Wikimedia; Steve Eastwood for

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