Everyone laughed in 2001 when President George W. Bush said of Vladimir Putin, “I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straightforward and trustworthy…. I was able to get a sense of his soul.”
During a speech in Philadelphia last week, voters who looked Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton in the eye likely found something pretty disturbing.
Here’s a slo-mo video assembled from the speech that reveals the abnormal eye movement. (The video starts gratuitously with a lizard’s eyes moving out of sync).
An article at The Hill by Dr. John R. Coppedge, a general surgeon from Texas, Clinton’s eyes during the speech did not always move in sync. “It appears,” he writes, “that she has a problem with her left sixth cranial nerve”:
That nerve serves only one function and that is to make the lateral rectus muscle contract. That muscle turns the eye in the direction away from the midline.
It comes out of the base of the brain and runs along the floor of the skull, immediately beneath the brain before coursing upward to the eye. Dysfunction of that muscle causes the striking picture of the eyes not aiming in the same direction and causes the patient to suffer double vision.
I will not repeat the good doctor’s analysis, which readers can find at the source, but I will share his bottom-line recommendation: that Clinton “agree to an independent exam and to have the questions raised here answered. It is too important not to get this right.”