"This could be an [evolutionary] strategy to find like-minded people so you stick together long enough to procreate," Hatemi said, adding that the union of James Carville, a liberal political consultant, with Mary Matalin, a conservative, is an "anomaly."
Although this kind of research is not actually going to supply politicians with information about your genes, it could help politicians indirectly to understand how personalities and beliefs affect political arguments, Fowler said.
This all means that it may be difficult to convince some people who are genetically predisposed to hold strong views on hot-button issues to change their minds -- even in the face of clear evidence, Fowler said. "The more we understand these different thought processes, the more we can tailor messages and do a better [job] of explaining to people what is true and not true," he said.
To learn about genetics and health policy, visit the Genetics and Public Policy Center at Johns Hopkins University.
Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.