Distribution differences. I’ve been writing about this for years. Libertarians are smarter than progressives, progressives are smarter than middle left and conservatives. Smart conservatives identify as libertarian, smart leftists identify as progressive. by comparing the minority elite against the majority the conclusion is obvious. This bit is an interesting explanation: People who vote republican are smarter than people who vote democrat. Why? Distributions.
Besides, these self-identifying things don’t tell us much. Instead, look at voting patterns: class, race, income, religion, country of origin, marital status, education and attractiveness determine your voting preferences. Single women vote left and that is the left’s appeal since single women are so significant that they tilt the majority distribution (in america.). Single women guarantee left movement, married women right movement. The rest is noise. We vote our status signaling, which means we vote our reproductive strategies in competition with one another. Not surprising.
Conservatives are better looking. The world appears more just and fair than it does to people who are less good looking. (Data on this since I think the 70’s? Remains constant.) People give you more time and attention, treat you more positively, and you make more money. etc. Also roughly equates: genetic, social, and economic classes are highly correlated. This means the status quo is a positive. ie: conservatism.
On the other hand, the way it works is this: 87% of republicans are white. And the republican party is increasing in its ‘whiteness’. The democratic party is increasing in its brownness (non whiteness). The academy is largely underclass, and business is largely middle and upper middle class. non-whites vote left and white single women vote left. Obvious stuff really: successful families wanna hold what they make, and underclasses want to take it. Simple.