Historically, watching any Speaker of the House's responses to any President's speech when the President is of the opposing party - is always very telling (and entertaining). For even when they're trying to suppress their facial expressions, politicians (contrary to popular belief) are only human. Yet when the Speaker and the President are of the same party and we see similar nonverbal signals - such behavior is particularly predictive.
There were several such body language moments during President Trump's speech before The Joint Session of Congress last week. One of these is discussed here.
Beginning at 59:04, President Trump continues, "...The time for small thinking is over. The time for trivial fights is behind us. We just need the courage to share the dreams that fill our hearts. The bravery to express the hopes that stir our souls. And the confidence to turn those hopes and dreams to action. From now on, America will be empowered by our aspirations, not burdened by our fears --- inspired by the future, not bound by the failures of the past --- and guided by our vision, not blinded by our doubts..."
Beginning at 59:13, just after Donald Trump says, "The time for trivial fights is behind us" - and then continuously during The President's next three sentences ("We just need the courage to share the dreams that fill our hearts. The bravery to express the hopes that stir our souls. And the confidence to turn those hopes and dreams to action" [lasting until 59:27]) - Paul Ryan displays a classic and quite pronounced suppressed smile. This smile is quite out of context - and here it's a truncated form of Ryan laughing AT the President, rather than laughing WITH him. In common colloquial, this is often referred to as a "Smirk".
Note also that Speaker Ryan displays "Hard Swallows" during 59:18 and again at 59:20 - indicative of significant anxiety and difficulty maintaining his composure.
Another intriguing nonverbal phenomenon is displayed at 59:27, as The Speaker of The House changes his head tilt from his right to his left. This dynamic of changing one's head tilt is often used as a catalyst in order to assist in curtailing an unwanted expression (e.g., to further suppress the emotion - and very much analogous to "biting one's tongue").
Summary: Paul Ryan was very much suppressing a sincere smile (smirking) at Donald Trump's statement of, "The time for trivial fights is behind us" during the President's Speech to The Joint Session of Congress last week. Paul Ryan's Body Language says, very clearly, that he does NOT believe Donald Trump's 'Trivial Fights' are behind him.
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