This article examines the 2017 German national election through the lens of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (lgbti) interests. It depicts the ways in which sexual minorities articulated their policy preferences, the degree to which these positions were taken up in party platforms and electoral discourse, and the extent to which the resulting coalition agreement pledged to address queer citizens’ concerns. I argue that, as a result of what Sarah Childs and Mona Lena Krook call a critical actor, this election provided sexual minorities with a high degree of responsiveness on one core issue: marriage equality. Other issues of interest to lgbti voters, however, remained largely invisible. The conclusions here are based on analysis of primary documents including interest group statements, party platforms, and coalition agreements, as well as on German-language news coverage of the election campaign.
Louise K. Davidson-Schmich is Professor of Political Science, University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida. Her research focuses on gender, sexuality, and politics in Germany and other long-term democracies. She is the author of Gender Quotas and Democratic Participation: Recruiting Candidates for Elective Offices in Germany (Ann Arbor, 2016) and editor of Gender, Intersections, and Institutions: Intersectional Groups Building Alliances and Gaining Voice in Germany (Ann Arbor, 2017). E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org