By Justin Lavelle,

For some of us, political points of view are the ‘bottom line’, the test against which we measure compatibility with another person. Don’t believe me? A poll by Wishbone concluded that 47% out of 10,000 respondents said they wouldn’t date someone with different political views.

This tells us clearly that many would rather avoid the issues that come with different political beliefs and also confirms why so many people marry or date within a specific cultural or religious community.

Are you one of the 47%? Are you on Team Trump or Team Hillary? Consider this relationship advice. You can find a match with dating sites that are specifically geared towards your candidate of choice, such as MapleMatch (anti-Trump – it will match you with Canadians so you can move, in the event of a Trump win), TrumpSingles (boasting “The number one dating site for those who still believe in Making Dating Great Again”), or LiberalHearts (their catchphrase? “Uniting single Democrats, progressives, environment and animal rights activists who are like in mind and liberal in love”).

For many couples, it isn’t until a real rabble-rouser of a candidate emerges that the differences become obvious. Case in point: Donald Trump. Most of us evolve slightly in our political views over time, as our lives change and we grow older, but it’s rare enough for people to switch political sides completely. So, it makes sense to start as you mean to finish and not date people that you know you are going to disagree with on some very fundamental issues in your lives. That said, if you do end up at different ends of the political spectrum, a little mindfulness will go a long way so that you can still have a strong and healthy relationship. Here’s some dating advice on getting through an election year unscathed, when you and your partner disagree, politically:

  • If you’re actively playing the dating game or seriously considering marriage, your ideal has to be someone who shares some of your core values. Hanging out at different ends of the political spectrum isn’t necessarily a deal breaker if you can agree on topics that are personally important to both of you. After all, a person is not their politics, unless they happen to be running for President, so eliminating everyone who isn’t a card carrying Democrat, for example, might be limiting your scope a little too much. But if you can’t agree on even the most basic things, it’s probably a sign that it wasn’t meant to be and might be time to move on.
  • You’ve met that perfect someone who turns out to be a right wing Conservative. You are a liberal Democrat. Are you doomed? Not necessarily. It can be possible to agree to disagree and make a list of topics that aren’t permitted at the dinner table or anywhere else!
  • If you do decide to run the gauntlet and talk politics with your partner of opposing views, do it respectfully and demand the same of them. You can hear each other out without fighting. The couples who agree on absolutely everything are few and far between, so know that differences are okay, and can even be something to be celebrated.
  • How a person comes to their political beliefs matters too! If your partner has done a lot of research and reading, you can be sure that their positions are considered and measured. If they rely on television sound bites and Twitter for their political beliefs and are backing someone based on those featherweight points, you should probably be a little more concerned. The person who doesn’t think like you do but has come to those beliefs through a process of due diligence deserves your respect, don’t you think?
  • Even a strongly divided set of beliefs can find some common ground, some areas where you can both agree. Democrats and Republicans in the House can cross the aisle on some issues, so you should be able to manage it as well. Ultimately, many more centric points of view are much closer than they are divided. It’s a question of finding that compromise position for the greater good. After all, what’s a relationship if not based on compromise and mutual respect?
  • Accept that your partner of differing views isn’t likely to change and badgering them about it isn’t going to help. They may soften or adjust their position on specific issues, but ultimately, very few people cross the aisle for good. This is a good time to practice the idea of ‘do unto others’: don’t try and change them!
  • How important are your political views to you? How about your new or prospective partner? Someone can be of a political view without being really active or vocal about the issues of the day. In other words, how much do your political differences really make in your day to day lives? Not much? Then don’t worry about it, you’ll probably be just fine!

Justin Lavelle is the Chief Communications Officer at PeopleLooker. PeopleLooker is your go-to source to check whether your new online or in person date is who they say they are. PeopleLooker is a leading source of online background checks and contact information. PeopleLooker allows individuals to find more information about people, phone numbers, email addresses, property records and criminal records in a way that’s fast, easy and affordable.