Politicians...maybe we should change the spelling to polieticians. They all do it and we all know it, even to the point of making jokes about it. "How can you tell when a politician is lying? Their lips are moving!" Yeah I know, lame joke. But true. A while back I read in the newspaper (a real paper-and-ink one) that the Governor Malloy of Connecticut was questioned on campaign fundraising issues relating to a trip to California recently.
One of the issues was that Governor Malloy reportedly had met with a major business consulting company that had 4 Million dollars in contracts with the University of Connecticut while on his fundraising trip. Soliciting state contractors for campaign contributions apparently violates campaign funding regulations. I don't know about campaign/fundraising laws, but I do know that his response to this question was highly problematic.
Governor Malloy: "I don't believe we have solicited them. To the best of my knowledge I did not solicit that person. That doesn't mean that somebody isn't at an event that I attend. I attend lots of events where lots of people are and I don't know what their status is at any given time. And so I think the answer is no."
"I don't believe..." This is a lack of commitment and quite often used by people to avoid telling the truth. How a person starts their responses is important, and he started off with a statement that lacks commitment.
"I don't believe we have solicited them." Here he used the plural "we". His use of "we" may be relating to himself and his Democratic party or his fundraising managers, etc, but it is unclear who the "we" refers to. Sometime people also use "we" to avoid putting themselves in their response, which is done by using the pronoun "I". The pronoun "I" shows commitment, so a more committed response would have been something like "No, I didn't solicit them."
"To the best of my knowledge I did not solicit that person." Again, the qualifying phrase "to the best of my knowledge" lacks commitment to what is being asserted and it is often associated with deception.
"To the best of my knowledge I did not solicit that person." He has a change of pronouns (We/I) here going from "I don't believe WE solicited them" to "To the best of my knowledge I did not solicit them." Both of these phrases lack commitment and are indicative of deception and concealment, and such a change in pronouns is often related to deception as well. He initially state "we" without saying who the "we" included, and then he says "I". This leaves open the possibility that someone on his team solicited them, which is why he said "I" here but was vague about who the "we" was. Either way it deserves to be probed further.
"To the best of my knowledge I did not solicit that person." His use of "that person" is clear distancing language. Using "that" puts the person or object you are referring to at a distance, as opposed to using "this". Former President Clinton used it as well, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Liewinski." Malloy's use of "person" also distances himself. Why not use the gentleman's name or their company? Also, by using "that" person it leaves the option open that he solicited another person in the company, just not "that" person.
"That doesn't mean that somebody isn't at an event that I attend. I attend lots of events where lots of people are and I don't know what their status is at any given time." Here Governor Malloy provides superfluous information that does not answer the question about meeting with the company that has contracts with the State of Connecticut on the fundraising trip. Often this is used as filler and is frequently used to divert or distract the interviewer by appearing to answer the question, as well as being an indicator of deception and/or concealment. Governor Malloy also said "That doesn't mean that somebody isn't at an event that I attend." This is generalized and vague language and is often used to conceal the identity of a person. Governor Malloy is not being specific and he does not answer the question.
"And so I think the answer is no." Well, his conclusion says is all! His use of "I think" is yet another lack of commitment which renders his response to this question unreliable and deserving of further detailed questioning. Also, "the answer" may be no, but is that the same as "no?" I call BS!