Even before signing the contract with the new “Hart aber Fair” moderator Louis Klamroth, WDR knew about his relationship with climate activist Luisa Neubauer. Does this have consequences?

“Louis Klamroth informed WDR about his relationship at the end of August last year, well before the contract was signed,” said a WDR spokeswoman to FOCUS online.

So far, with its communication in the past few days, WDR has given the impression that the station only knew about the relationship with Neubauer after the Klamroth deal had been completed.

A few weeks ago, the broadcaster said in response to a FOCUS online request: “Mr. Klamroth’s private life was not an issue in the talks between WDR and him before the collaboration was announced. Mr. Klamroth informed the WDR at the end of August about his relationship, which has now become public.”

It is now clear that the WDR was informed about the relationship between the announcement and the signing of the contract by Klamroth. The broadcaster, which belongs to public broadcasting, announced on August 17 that Klamroth would moderate “hard but fair” in the future.

At that time, the Plasberg successor said: “‘Hart but fair’ is one of the most established formats on German television and I am very pleased to be able to help shape this program on this prominent slot as a moderator from next year and to be able to lead it into the future.” apparently it came much later.

The relationship with Luisa Neubauer became public on December 14th. In an interview with the media magazine “DWDL”, Klamroth admitted to being with the climate activist. It is clear to him that more attention is now being paid to his person.

“Because I’m dating a public figure, I think the audience has a right to know. That’s why it’s important to me to be transparent at this point,” he told the portal.

Whether the WDR violated internal compliance regulations is also to be discussed at a meeting of the Broadcasting Council today. Shortly before the Broadcasting Council meeting, which begins in the early afternoon, the news hit like a bomb. The CDU MP and broadcasting councilor Jan Heinisch reacted in an interview with FOCUS online “completely surprised by the new news. So far I have understood it completely differently”. The Christian Democrat is now demanding full clarification of the facts.

The WDR also said: “We are convinced that Louis Klamroth understands his journalistic craft and is able to separate his private life from his presenting work. He proved that on yesterday’s show. Incidentally, in the case of Louis Klamroth, as with all other moderators of political programs, the journalistic standards for which ARD stands in a special way apply: independence, objectivity, non-partisanship. This also means that his partner will not be a guest on his show.”