The freedom of presidential contenders Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to roam around carte blanche at the second debate Sunday evening benefited the latter, but hurt the former.
According to body language experts questioned by The Washington Post, it led Trump, the GOP candidate, to appear like a tough and dominant alpha male, or a “bull in attack mode,” according to expert David Givens, director of the Center for Nonverbal Studies.
“Trump’s constant pacing and restless movements around the stage attracted attention from Hillary’s words, and visually disrespected her physical presence on the stage, as in ‘I am big, you are small,’” he stated.
To make matters worse for Clinton, the Democrat candidate, she chose to remain seated as he spoke, thus making herself look weak and frail.
“Sitting is submissive; standing up is assertive,” Givens continued. “He paces (during her turn) to stay in motion, taking visual attention away from Clinton and her words … His main message is, ‘I am here, see me.’”
The Democrat candidate also smiled at all the wrong moments, making herself look perhaps somewhat idiotic, if not insane.
“I think (the smile) was OK in the first debate (since) Trump rambled and had run-on sentences,” argued Patti Wood, author of “SNAP: Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language, and Charisma.”
“(He) often did not make sense, so smiling seemed appropriate to communicate that she felt it was funny,” she explained regarding the first debate, noting however that Trump’s use of complete sentences at the second debate made her smug smiles look out out of place.
Overall, the GOP candidate clearly dominated the debate, whereas the Democrat candidate did not. Trump demonstrated that when it comes to taking down bad guys (or girls), he is not afraid to unleash his inner bull, so to speak.
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