The Parliamentary Deployment Votes Database provides data on the voting behaviour of 301 political parties in 1,022 parliamentary votes on military missions between 1990 and 2019 in 21 countries of the Global North. This special data feature introduces the database and presents descriptive statistics and basic patterns on some of its key variables: general, political, and regional characteristics of missions and votes themselves; the level of agreement; and party-political contestation. The number of deployment votes has increased over the course of the 1990s and then fluctuated around a stable annual average of 40 to 50 votes. At the same time, legislative–executive relations in security and defence policy and, as a consequence, the number of deployment votes, continue to differ substantially between countries. Whereas support for military missions has increased over time, the degree of contestation, as measured by an agreement index, differs considerably across the countries under study. Whether a political party supports a military mission depends not only on it being part of a governing coalition or in opposition but also on its political ideology: support is lowest among parties of the Radical Left, increases among green and social-democratic parties and peaks among liberal, conservative and Christian-democratic parties. Radical-right parties are less supportive than centrist parties but more supportive than radical-left parties. Regional peculiarities notwithstanding, this pattern can be found in Western and Eastern Europe, East Asia and North America. The database will be interesting for scholars of the democratic politics of military missions and particularly legislative–executive relations and political parties in security and defence policy, providing the foundations for a comparative analysis of different missions, the ideological foundations of contestation, government–opposition dynamics and legislative–executive relations in security and defence policy.
This was originally published on SAGE Publications Ltd: Journal of Peace Research: Table of Contents.