The researchers then ask:

Why, then, did Haidt have such difficulty finding more than a handful of conservative colleagues? The current results suggest one answer: Members of the conservative minority are reluctant to express their political beliefs publicly. Survey 2 shows why: Hostility toward and willingness to discriminate against conservatives is widespread. One in six respondents said that she or he would be somewhat (or more) inclined to discriminate against conservatives in inviting them for symposia or reviewing their work. One in four would discriminate in reviewing their grant applications. More than one in three would discriminate against them when making hiring decisions. Thus, willingness to discriminate is not limited to small decisions. In fact, it is strongest when it comes to the most important decisions, such as grant applications and hiring.

This hostile climate offers a simple explanation of why conservatives hide their political opinions from colleagues. Given that all academics depend on the opinions of their colleagues—who judge their papers, grants, and job applications—and given that such judgments are typically made by multiple reviewers (most of whom are liberal), this means that outspoken conservatives face a very serious problem. Hence, the more conservative respondents are, the more they hide their political opinions.