home
RSS
How you vote may be in your genes
Our genetic makeup may play a role in our political behavior, according to researchers.
August 28th, 2012
11:52 AM ET

How you vote may be in your genes

Ever wonder why we vote the way we do? Is it the influence of family? Or is it because of our culture or where we grew up? Could be, but now researchers are saying it might be in our genes.

Scientists have always wondered what drives our political behavior, and why some of us are passionate over some issues and not others. Now investigators have found it could be something deeper than the "I Like Ike" button your grandfather wore.

Traditionally, social scientists have felt that our political preferences were influenced by environmental factors as well as how and where we grew up. But recently, studies are finding it could be biological and that our genes also influence our political tastes.

In a review out of the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, data showed that genetic makeup has some influence on why people differ on such issues as unemployment, abortion, even the death penalty.  By pinpointing certain genes in the human body, scientists can predict parts of a person's political ideology.

"Some people are naturally groupish, others not so much. Some people are sexually free, others sexually repressed.

"Some part of these differences is from rearing and culture, but massive variation exists even within the same household. One's overall genetic disposition has some role in the formation of one's psychological architecture," notes Peter K. Hatemi, associate professor of political science and microbiology at Penn State University, as well as a research fellow at the USSC-University of Sydney and the primary investigator of the study.

The review, which was published in this week's issue of Trends in Genetics, notes more research needs to be done to better understand the genetic influences of our social views and why certain genes cause reactions in certain people when political views are expressed.

“The concept that thousands of genes interacting with the environment lead to different cognitive and emotive states that result in different political views has value," explains Hatemi.

"Rather than people on opposing sides of the political fence yelling at each about who is right, or trying to show or convince the other is wrong, maybe this research can help the public and policy makers recognize that people see the same thing differently, and at times no amount of yelling or 'proof' will sway them.”


soundoff (192 Responses)
  1. Wei Du

    Have you ever heard of second life (sl for short). It is essentially a online game where you can do anything you want. sl is literally my second life (pun intended lol). If you want to see more you can see these Second Life websites and blogs

    http://everydayliteracies.blogspot.com/2017/03/a-new-book-in-our-new-literacies-and.html?m=0

    May 11, 2021 at 02:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Fritz Stemmer

    This was great! I would like you to clean up all this spam though

    https://www.linkedin.com/in/yusuf-hanafy-82493b183

    May 12, 2021 at 04:13 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3

Leave a Reply to coronavirus


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.