Study: Politics ruined Thanksgiving in 2016
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The political divisions laid bare during the 2016 presidential campaign spread to the Thanksgiving dinner table last year, a new study shows.

Politically opposed family members spent up to a half hour less time together last Thanksgiving in the wake of a heated presidential campaign between President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump announces new social media network called 'TRUTH Social' Virginia State Police investigating death threat against McAuliffe Meadows hires former deputy AG to represent him in Jan. 6 probe: report MORE and Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMeghan McCain: 'SNL' parodies made me feel like 'laughing stock of the country' Hill: Trump reelection would spur 'one constitutional crisis after another' Trump defends indicted GOP congressman MORE.

UCLA professor Keith Chen and Washington State University professor Ryne Rohla tracked the movements of more than 10 million Americans during the last two Thanksgiving holidays, focusing especially on people who traveled from Republican-leaning areas to Democratic-leaning areas, and vice versa.


The study found that politically divided families spent, on average, 20 to 30 minutes less time around the dinner table in 2016 than in 2015. The study estimated a loss of 27 million hours of “cross-partisan Thanksgiving discourse.”

The study used the services of data-tracking company SafeGraph, which used cell phone data to track a users’ home location, then compared it to where they were on Thanksgiving Day.

Using precinct data, Chen and Rohla then narrowed their sample to only include those who traveled to areas politically opposed to their own.

The 2016 presidential election included two disliked candidates. An August 2016 survey showed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton with a favorability rating of 42 percent, while 35 percent of people viewed then-candidate Donald Trump favorably.

The latest polls have shown Trump with his lowest approval ratings to date. A poll last week showed 41 percent of people approve of Trump’s performance, while 59 percent disapprove.