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Researchers from Duke University have concluded that voters probably lean more toward candidates that reinforce their identities rather than following political proposals.

The document published in Cognitive Science states that in recent elections the voting has leaned more toward trends such as religion and community, as opposed to political matters. This signals a shift in voter behaviour as it was understood. 

“For a citizen that is going to the polls it’s not very clear how an economic or political deal will affect his or her life, for instance, in the form of a wage increase” explains psychology and neuroscience professor Scott Huettel. In his opinion “it’s easier for the voter to lean toward a candidate who reinforces feelings of patriotism, global citizenship, etc.”.

Voting based on identity feelings has an immediate effect.  Although a single vote won’t change an electoral outcome, it can indicate certain trends at the moment of casting the ballots.

Source: Research Gate

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