On Tuesday, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions testified before the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee. From a nonverbal perspective, the examples here are so numerous that an entire course could be taught from this single video.
What follows is a partial nonverbal analysis of a small portion of Jeff Sessions' testimony - in an exchange with Representative Ted Lieu.
TED LIEU: (Continuing at 5:19:01): You did have communications with the Russians last year, isn't that right?
JEFF SESSIONS: Repeat that.
TED LIEU: You did have communications with the Russians last year, isn't that right? --- Just yes or no.
JEFF SESSIONS: I had a - meeting with the Russian Ambassador, yes Ω
TED LIEU: That's exactly the - opposite answer you gave, under oath, to the US Senate. So, again, either you're lying to the US Senate, or you're lying to the US House of Representatives.
JEFF SESSIONS: Well [over-talking by Lieu, Sessions, and Goodlatte]
BOB GOODLATTE: The time of the gentleman has expired. The witness can answer any further if he chooses to.
JEFF SESSIONS: Um, I won't repeat it Mr. Chairmen. But, ah, I hope the congressman knows - and I hope all of you know - that my answer to that question, "I did not meet with the Russians", was explicitly responding, ah, to the shocking suggestion, that I as a surrogate, was meeting on a continuing basis with Russian officials - and the implication was to impact the campaign in some sort of nefarious way - and all I did was meet in my office with the Ambassador which we didn't discuss anything like that § So, I just, ah, ah, wanna say I appreciate, ah, the Congressman's right. I guess he can say - it's free speech - can't be sued - here - um - so, ah - I just ah - my response - um - I'm sorry that, um - Ah, that's my response.
Attorney General Sessions displays several nonverbal red flags in this portion of his testimony. During 5:19:14, just after he says, "I had a - meeting with the Russian Ambassador, yes", Sessions' displays a "Tongue Jut" - more specifically, a "Loose Tongue Jut" (notated by Ω in the dialogue above).
A "Loose Tongue Jut" is significant for the thought-emotions of "I've been caught", "I've been bad", "I've done a foolish thing" (Navarro). It's important to not confuse this with a "Tight Tongue Jut" - which has a completely different meaning.
A few moments later, during 5:20:01, just after AG Sessions says, "... and all I did was meet in my office with the Ambassador which we didn't discuss anything like that...", he displays another Loose Tongue Jut (notated by § in the above dialog).
During 5:19:21, just after Rep. Lieu says, "... So, again, either you're lying to the US Senate ...", AG Sessions turns his head away and fumbles in his left inside jacket pocket - but not for long.
He then shuffles through two notepads and looks away again during 5:19:22 - 5:19:25.
Both of these MAPs (Manipulators, Adaptors, Pacifiers) are high anxiety signals indicative of an adrenaline surge. The fact that he looks away - is a form of diminished eye contact and in this context is highly indicative of deception.
From a statement analysis perspective (a subset of paralanguage) Jeff Sessions use of "surrogate" in this setting is also particularly telling. In using the word in this context, he's attempting to distance himself from Donald Trump's campaign - in which he already held a key role.
The Attorney General's numerous stuttering displays at the end of his statement is also a red flag - indicative of low confidence and considerable emotional discomfort.
Moreover, an apology, such as "I'm sorry" wrapped in stuttering is NOT a statement associated with someone who just recounted the facts as he recalled them.
It's also profoundly important to note that The Attorney General of The United States just issued a form of thinly veiled threat to Ted Lieu when he said, "... I appreciate, ah, the Congressman's right. I guess he can say - it's free speech - can't be sued ...". In this moment Jeff Sessions felt cornered.
Summary: Jeff Sessions' nonverbal, verbal, and paralanguage behavior in the segment of his testimony before the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee outlined here, indicates that with very high probability he was being deceptive.
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