New article on the role of party socialization for legislative behavior

In a new article recently published in Legislative Studies Quarterly, Philipp Mai and Georg Wenzelburger investigate how the socialization experiences of Members of Parliament (MPs) at lower levels of their party affect how they vote in parliament. Exploiting the full set of recorded votes in the German Bundestag between 1949 und 2017, the authors show that MPs who did not hold party offices at the local or regional level prior to their first election into parliament have a significantly higher probability to vote against the party line in legislative votes. In addition, this ‘Ochsentour’ effect is largest for newly elected MPs and vanishes the longer MPs stay in parliament. To conclude, party socialization and parliamentary socialization are both important and complementary pathways to party unity in parliament.