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Nonetheless, some differences appeared between the brain activity of Democrats and Republicans. Take empathy: One Democrat's brain lit up at an image of Kerry "with a profound sense of connection, like a beautiful sunset," Freedman said. Brain activity in a Republican shown an image of Bush was "more interpersonal, such as if you smiled at someone and they smiled back."
And when voters were shown a Bush ad that included images of the Sept. 11 attacks, the amygdala region of the brain which lights up for most of us when we see snakes illuminated more for Democrats than Republicans. The researchers' conclusion: At a subconscious level, Republicans were apparently not as bothered by what Democrats found alarming.