Are our politics determined by our hearts or our minds? An Interview with Drew Westen

program date: 
Wed, 10/08/2008

The Democrats are riding a new wave of popularity this year. Are they winning new supporters because they have better policy positions than the Republicans or are they doing a better job of appealing to voters' emotions? Do we make our political choices based on reason or are we persuaded by messages that tap into positive associations in our minds?

This week on Voices from the Edge, Jo Ann and Dave talk with Drew Westen, author of The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation. Westen, a clinical psychologist and political srategist from Emory University, believes successful politics requires understanding how the interplay between reason and emotion inside the brain energizes voters. Westen, who wrote the book in part to help Democrats avoid the strategic mistakes that gave the White House to George Bush for the past eight years, will cast a light on what the 2008 presidential candidates are doing right and doing wrong to reach the hearts and minds of American voters.


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