Free votes, MPs, and constituents: The case of same-sex marriage in Canada

L. Marvin Overby, Christopher Raymond, Zeynep Taydas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


In the summer of 2005, with the passage of the Civil Marriage Act, Canada became the third country to extend full rights to same-sex marriages. This article explores passage of the CMA, focusing on parliamentary voting behavior on the free vote used in the House of Commons. Using multivariate empirical analysis we find unusually strong evidence of constituency characteristics influencing the voting behavior of MPs, a rare outcome given the existing scholarly literature on free votes. In a concluding section, we discuss what these findings imply about the increasingly important debate in Canada about parliamentary accountability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)465-478
Number of pages14
JournalAmerican Review of Canadian Studies
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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