Jessica Rodriguez–On October 3rd, the Junior Fellows held a debate watch party for one of the most anticipated moments of the 2012 presidential race: the first Presidential debate. The watch party was held at Will Phillips’ apartment, and we ordered pepperoni pizza, bread sticks with marinara sauce, and soda. The Junior Fellows is a very diverse group, not only by race, sex, economic status, and age, but also by political beliefs. Accordingly, we had representatives for both Democrats and Republicans on hand, and our responses after the debate were a function, in part, of our views coming into the debate.
On the Democratic side, for example, I was thinking: “Obama should be more aggressive, but he is behaving professionally and presidentially. He outlined his steps on every issue, and he backed up his arguments with facts. Mitt Romney, meanwhile, failed to recognize how his tax cuts will affect financial aid for students, a point which President Obama was able to highlight. I wish the topic of higher education would have been discussed further.”
On the Republican side, however, Taylor Parker thought: “The debate was a much-needed direct confrontation without the media filter. Romney was in command, keeping a steady gaze, while Obama appeared confused, often looking away from the camera. The debate did its job, showing how the two candidates think on their feet.”
On both sides, however, it was great to get together and see democracy in action!