The CHRNA6 Gene, Patience, and Voter Turnout

30 Pages Posted: 26 Oct 2009

See all articles by Christopher T. Dawes

Christopher T. Dawes

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Department of Political Science

Peter John Loewen

University of Toronto

Date Written: October 26, 2009

Abstract

Political scientists have recently explored the genetic basis of political participation. Fowler, Baker & Dawes (2008) recently showed in two independent samples of twins that voter turnout is heritable and Fowler & Dawes (2008) identified two specific genes associated with turnout. Earlier work (Fowler & Kam 2006) has demonstrated a link between patience and turnout. We combine these insights by investigating two genes that are associated with patience and may explain variation in voter turnout. Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, we show that individuals with a version of the CHRNA6 gene are significantly less likely to have voted in the 2000 presidential election. We hypothesize that the association between the CHRNA6 gene and voting is mediated by patience.

Suggested Citation

Dawes, Christopher T. and Loewen, Peter John, The CHRNA6 Gene, Patience, and Voter Turnout (October 26, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1494509 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1494509

Christopher T. Dawes (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Department of Political Science ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Code 0521
La Jolla, CA 92093-0521
United States

HOME PAGE: http://dss.ucsd.edu/~cdawes/

Peter John Loewen

University of Toronto ( email )

Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G8
Canada

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