With a bit of additional editing (making this already cringe-worthy moment seem even worse), a portion of this political faux pas is now a viral gif (see below). The above video is the original moment, however. It was captured on 27 April 2016, shortly after Ted Cruz announced his running mate in Carly Fiorina.
What follows is a partial nonverbal analysis.
Carly begins touching Cruz's left, upper arm-shoulder and slides her had down his arm. This momentarily puts her in the alpha role to Cruz's beta.
There is an inordinate amount of time spent with their hands behind Fiorina's lower back as they initiate their hand-holding. It's very noteworthy here that the corners of Ms. Fiorina's mouth are directed downward - whereas Senator Cruz's are turned upward.
A continuation of the same "arm wrestling" behind Fiorina's lower back.
Next, with their hands down low (and finally centered between them), Carly has positioned her hand in front - as this would have allowed Senator Cruz's hand to be in front once they are swung up above their heads - giving him the position of nonverbal dominance. As she is the potential VP candidate to his Presidential - such acquiescence is natural and expected.
As their arm swing upward, about one-third of the way up, the Texas Senator re-adjust his hand. However, then the former HP CEO takes the position of dominance - gripping her had around Cruz's fingers. This again puts Fiorina in much more of an alpha role.
Seconds later, Ted, not wanting to continue his beta behavior - again readjusts. He continues to have a difficult time of it however - fumbling twice when their hands are full raised - finally getting his hand higher and enveloping Carly's.
This nonverbal interaction is more than just a simple fumbling of hands - rather it reveals a fundamental emotional belief of Carly Fiorina's. She does not at all believe herself to be beta to Ted Cruz.
This website serves as an objective reference source for the science and art of Body Language/Nonverbal Communication. In an effort to be both practical and academic, many examples from/of varied cultures, politicians, professional athletes, legal cases, public figures, etc., are cited in order to teach and illustrate both the interpretation of others’ body language as well as the projection of one’s own nonverbal skills in many different contexts – not to advance any political, religious or other agenda.
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