Sure, you aren’t supposed to judge people by their appearance or books by their covers but some people put off others by more than just their appearance. Oh, yeah. She says her name is pronounced: “SOCK-ey.” Why didn’t she spell it correctly?
Off-Putting Mannerisms, like the STOP RIGHT THERE hand Psaki used in a press conference add to the distaste.
Can’t spell.. No Make-Up… Not pretty.. This isn’t going well..
Rosie is another example of an un-pretty Trump-Hater.
And new research explains why political conservatives hold a “beauty advantage.”
Two recent research articles suggest that political conservatives tend to be more physically attractive than political liberals.
Niclas Berggren, Henrik Jordahl, and Panu Poutvaara present evidence from three studies in the Journal of Public Economics that right-leaning politicians in Australia, Europe, and the US “look more beautiful.” Partly because of that, they get more votes, particularly in low-level elections where other information is scarce.
Rolfe Peterson and Carl Palmer present evidence from two studies in the journal Politics and the Life Sciences that “more attractive individuals” are more likely to consider themselves to be conservative and Republican.
So, both conservative leaders and their followers “look better.” OK, I get that partisans in our highly polarized political environment will be drawn to any advantage they can dispute. But the really interesting part for the nerds among us may be why conservatives have this advantage.
One of the neat things about this research is that the authors offer explanations about why people on the right hold a beauty advantage.
Not surprisingly, economists offer an economic explanation. They “rightly” note (should I claim this pun?) that a lot of research shows that physically attractive people earn more money. And because they earn more money, they are more likely to oppose policies calling for the redistribution of economic resources, like taxes. A classic conservative policy position.
The political scientists offer a psychological explanation. They note that social interaction is often easier and more pleasant for physically attractive individuals. Others tend to evaluate “beautiful people” as being more successful, intelligent, and capable. And they tend to treat them more warmly. This includes evidence that parents treat their more attractive children more warmly than their less attractive children. Whoa!
As a result, physically attractive people are less likely to experience life challenges that might be addressed by government social welfare programs. Therefore, they will be less likely to see a need for and support such programs. Again, a classic conservative policy position. And to be fair to the economists, they also acknowledge this explanation.
Biology Matters in Politics
Conservatives tend to be more physically attractive. That proves the opposite too. Liberals are more ugly.
But, if you’re interested in the question of whether and how biology affects political behavior, you have even more evidence now that it does along with a couple of conventional, persuasive, arguments about how that happens.