Conservative politicians and voting on same-sex marriage
We examine whether conservative politicians are less likely to support same‐sex marriage when they run for office in safe rather than in contested districts using new data based on a roll‐call vote in the national German parliament. The results show that the margin of the majority for the incumbent in the previous election was a strong predictor for supporting same‐sex marriage. When the majority increased by a 1 percentage point, the likelihood of voting in favour of same‐sex marriage decreased by around 1.3 percentage points. We conjecture that politicians are election‐motivated – even when submitting roll‐call votes on a matter of conscience.