Although much current research highlights differences between political partisans, our research provides evidence that strong partisan biases in meta-perceptions are largely symmetrical for Democrats and Republicans. This suggests that biased meta-perceptions are a consequence of shared psychology rather than merely a consequence of divergent ideological convictions. Meta-perceptions represent evaluations that are distinct from perceptions at a core psychological level: While negative perceptions, such as dehumanization, can be thought of as offensive or reprehensible, meta-perceptions are inferences about what others think and can, therefore, be false. The theoretical distinctions between perceptions and meta-perceptions suggest that practical approaches to reducing negative meta-perceptions may be distinct from those that aim to reduce negative perceptions.
"Exaggerated Meta-Perceptions Predict Intergroup Hostility Between American Political Partisans." PNAS, 2020.