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Vol. 119, Issue 20

oct. 9, 2012

Presidential Debate 2012

Special Edition


ok, so my subs really aren't gourmet and we're not french either. my subs just taste a little better, that's all! I wanted to call it jimmy john's tasty sandwiches, but my mom told me to stick with gourmet. She thinks whatever I do is gourmet, but i don't think either of us knows what it means. so let's stick with tasty!

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dEbATEfEST

Oct. 9, 2012

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gusto kubiak|clarion

The estimated crowd of 5,000 on Carnegie Green were entertained by 3 bands, a hotdog eating contest and celebrity talk show hosts. The festivities culminated into a debate watch party.

Crowd celebrates debate at festival by hannah gilham & gigi peccolo Clarion Staff

DebateFest, DU’s free outdoor celebration of the presidential debates, kicked off at 3 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon with students, alumni, guests and the press lining up to get into the festival. With three separate entrances, volunteers in red shirts made sure to check IDs and bags at the gates. An estimated 5,000 people attended DebateFest, many of which were current students. Contrary to what was previously advertised, students with a valid Pioneer ID were allowed admission whether they were registered or not. The festivities of the day included live performances from Denver bands, speeches from Governor John Hickenlooper, Denver mayor Michael Hancock and Chancellor Robert Coombe, as well as hot dog eating

contests, vendors, painters and a live broadcast of MSNBC talk shows. Various leaders of DU and the community at large spoke about the history unfolding on the campus on stage. “This is a historic moment for our university, for our city, and for our state… it fits perfectly with who we are, and this is how we show it,” said Coombe on the Carnegie lawn around 3:20 p.m. as students and guests were filing in. Hancock and Hickenlooper also spoke to the crowd and urged DebateFest attendees to vote in the upcoming election. “What is happening here today is the backbone of democracy, but it doesn’t make a worm’s worth of difference if we don’t get out and talk about it,” said Hickenlooper. Hancock echoed the message later during the event. “I understand Pioneers blaze trails; so blaze a trail to the election box,” said Hancock.

Throughout the rest of the day, hot dog eating contests ensued, as well as various Denver musicians and newscasters from local stations to entertain the masses. After Hickenlooper’s brief speech, Mustard’s Last Stand hosted a hot dog eating contest; there were two teams and each member of the team needed to eat two Chicago style hot dogs in one minute. The winning team received 100 hot dogs donated to a charity of their choice. “Another One Bites The Dust” played in the background while sophomores Mia Estenson, Mike Tsiolis, Maggie Cunningham and freshman Roy Harris competed and came out the winning team. The charity of their choice was the Delores Project, a shelter and services project for homeless women. “It was the most disgusting thing I’ve done in my life,” said Harris. Other attendees could grab a bite at more than 12 famous Denver food trucks.


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Issues Alley, made up of 50 separate booths, was located outside near the Driscoll bridge and worked to inform guests about the issues to be discussed during the debate. “It felt like everybody here has come by,” said Thai Trieu, marketing director for the So Cal region at USA Today. “People are excited; they want to know what we’re doing.” Kimberly Robson, director of Affiliate & National Programs for NARAL Pro-Choice America, was also surprised by student attendance in Issues Alley. “We’ve had a tremendous response; people are thanking us for being here,” said Robson. “It’s been extremely busy; we did not expect it to be this busy.” Occupy DU was also present at DebateFest. “What it means for us to be here is to add a lot of stuff to the conversation that’s not really talked about,” said third year graduate student Roshan Bliss. “We’re trying to get students’ attention.” Unofficial mascot Boone appeared throughout the day, taking photos with students, posing for the media and proposing to the DU dance team all while sporting a white suit. Denver artist Brian Olsen then took the stage to create a painting of President Obama and Governer Mitt Romney in front of a live audience to the tune of Led Zeppelin. “We can have some fun when it comes to politics,” Olsen told the crowd before he began his painting, which was complete only eight minutes later to cheers from the audience. “It’s kind of neat to have a world class event in my backyard,” said Olsen, who is a Colorado native and lives in Denver. MSNBC had a live newscast set up in front of Mary Reed Hall, where crowds were gathered all day trying to be seen in the background while MSNBC had various pre-debate shows. At one point, Chris Matthews, host of “Hardball,” walked down near the crowd of about 150 to get their feedback. Students and reporters alike were concerned that the debate would not cover important issues. “I hope they cover women’s issues… taxes and healthcare also. I just want to see them actually make a change- so far it’s been all talk,” said DebateFest volunteer Sarah Fernandez, an undeclared freshman from Denver. There was an alumni booth where former DU students could meet and greet. Richard Sandrock finished his graduate studies at DU last year in environmental management and policy. “I’m looking forward to the debate; I’m an Obama supporter so I’m looking forward to

dEbATEfEST

Oct. 9, 2012

katy owens|clarion

katy owens|clarion

ryan lumpkin|clarion

gusto kubiak|clarion

Sam Estenson and Mustard’s Last Stand mascot cheer on students competing in hot dog eating contest (top left) while Boone shows off his white suit (top right.) Chris Matthews interviews students on air (bottom left) and Issues Alley gets traffec from DebateFest attendees (bottom right.)

seeing him beat up on Romney,” said Sandrock. “I’m glad to see DU represented on a worldwide stage,” said alum Stefani Vital, class of ‘78. Cindy Hyman, one of the volunteers at the alumni booth and assistant director of Alumni Career Programs, said she received a lot of feedback from both current and future alumni. “What we’re hearing from alumni is that they’re incredibly proud of our university; one thing we’ve heard is if you’re not proud, you don’t have a pulse,” said Hyman. “I think we had 600 alums registered for DebateFest. We hope that we have more visibility after this. We’ve had so many students stop by.” The debate itself sparked friendly but heated conversation and demonstration across DebateFest. “Fire Obama” and “Colorado for Obama” signs littered the crowds and stickers for various causes decorated the attendees. “It’s cool to see a lot of people’s political views. Everyone seems to have very strong political views,” said Fernandez. Around 5 p.m., Denver native Nathaniel Rateliff took the main stage and serenaded

the crowd with folk and blues-inspired music. Just as the clouds rolled in, The Lumineers took the stage. One hour later and 30 degrees lower, DU students, alumni and guests spread blankets and chairs and prepared to watch the presidential debate on the jumbo screen. Cheers erupted as Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney appeared on-stage and shook hands. Even though the temperature dropped from 61 to 54 degrees during the course of the debate, attendees were as vocal as ever and continued with loud applause and spirited comments throughout the debate. First year graduate student Shannon Jackson from Atlanta, Ga. enjoyed the community of the evening. “My favorite part of today was meeting people from school and being with people from the community,” said Jackson. Freshman Benjamin Mills, a finance major from Golden was one of the many students at the event. “The presidential debate, the Lumineers, all the activities… it’s just another reason to be proud to be a Pioneer,” said Mills.


dEbATEfEST

Oct. 9, 2012

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Denver darlings delight crowd by dylan proietti Entertainment Editor

The DU Debatefest, aside from the necessary political activities, featured a trio of Denver-based bands in the form of Zach Heckendorf, Nathaniel Rateliff and The Lumineers. This indie concert series was well received by the crowd, which grew increasingly more enthusiastic as the evening wore on and culminating in a frenzied climax with the performance by The Lumineers. The concert series began with 19-year-old Zach Heckendorf, an acoustic singer-songwriter and graduate of Cherry Creek High School. The up-and-comer’s set started shortly after the gates to the event opened, meaning the crowd had yet to fully arrive. Still, the singersongwriter performed an enthusiastic 6-song set. Though the complicated guitar patterns and surprisingly husky voice were clearly the performer’s strong suits, he did not appear overly comfortable on stage until the band began their fourth song, the single “All the Right Places.” Nathaniel Rateliff, the indie folk artist who recently released his album In Memory of Loss, performed next. Rateliff, the frontman for the band, has composed a minimalist discography focusing heavily on lyrics and echoing the style of artists such as Leonard Cohen and Bon Iver. From the first songs, fans sang along to lyrics, demonstrating their familiarity with the band. Its 8-song set was defined by soft vocals dripping with emotion and a gentle coalescence of somber acoustic guitar and bone-chilling bass, most apparent during the fourth song, a clear crowd favorite entitled “Shroud,” a folk love ballad. Rateliff himself, a surprisingly humorous performer, took to the stage in an unassuming, manner that allowed him to slide into the listener’s hearts, leaving a hole and them wondering

gusto kubiak|clarion

The Lumineers performed in front of a responsive crowd, many of whom were chanting the lyrics along with the band.

how they lived without the sound on songs like “Nothing to Show,” the seventh of the band’s set. Arguably the most anticipated portion of the festival was the arrival of The Lumineers. The band, which gained critical acclaim last spring with their self-titled album, gave an outstandingly energetic performance. The folk rock group, composed of Wesley Schultz (guitar, lead vocals), Jeremiah Fraites (percussion, mandolin, vocals) and Neyla Pekarek (cello, mandolin, piano, vocals), returned to Denver before beginning their mostly sold out fall tour. When the band’s set began, the audience rushed the stage. The Lumineers brought a stage presence not felt on their album and this, coupled with the wind blowing through the trees on the DU campus and falling leaves, made for an marvelous show. The band’s single, “Ho Hey,” garnered the greatest response from the festival’s participants.

The crowd chanted each lyric in unison and releasing a near primal scream on the word “hope” in the lyric “Love we need it now/Let’s hope for some.” The band’s 11th song choice, a yet unnamed duet, allowed Pekarek to display her singing prowess, creating beautiful harmonies with Schultz. The set ended with the song “Flapper Girl,” an aptly chosen final song. The somber tone, meandering piano and guiding vocals by Schultz felt like a farewell, leaving the audience on a good note. Though dominated by The Lumineers, the musical selection at Debatefest was a trifecta of near perfection to kick off the pre-debate celebrations. The fluid guitar sounds of Heckendorf, the unassuming, but moving performance by Rateliff and the sensational showmanship of The Lumineers made this concert series one audiences are sure to remember.

gusto kubiak (left), katy owens (right)|clarion

A sea of students, members of the community and general participants of DebateFest (left) watched three Denver bands, including Nathaniel Rateliff (right), perform last Wednesday.


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dEbATE 2012

Oct. 9, 2012

Obama acts presidential, a by manthan bhatt Managing Editor

Disagreements over raising taxes on the wealthy and Medicare highlighted the first presidential debate between President Barack Obama, the democratic nominee, and Governor Mitt Romney, the republican nominee for president. The debate, which took place Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. was hosted on campus and moderated by PBS’s Jim Lehrer, had over 67

million viewers and coverage by 47 countries. With the world watching, Romney took advantage of low expectations and a president who seemed disengaged with the debate according to Romney adviser John Sununu. “The president has a very similar view he had when he ran four years, that a bigger government, spending more, taxing more, regulating more - if you will, trickle-down government - would

work,” said Romney during the debate. “That’s not the right answer for America. I’ll restore the vitality that gets America working again.” Obama disagreed with Romney, though not attacking him directly. “Let me talk specifically about what I think we need to do,” said Obama in response. He continued to layout his vision to keep tuition low and hire 100,000 new math and science teachers. Obama argued that Romney’s $5 trillion tax-cut would hurt government programs, specifically ones that would hire more teachers. Romney, bothered by the president’s comments on his tax plan, spoke over Lehrer. “There’s no economist that can say Mitt Romney’s tax plan adds $5 trillion if I say I will not add to the deficit with my tax plan,” said Romney. The debate continued with Obama repeatedly mentioning Romney’s $5 trillion tax cut withRomney denying it at every point. “And the fact is that if you are lowering the rates the way you described, Governor, then it is not possible to come up with enough deductions and loopholes that only affect high-income individuals,” said Obama. “It’s arithmetic.” The beginning segment on the economy was originally set to last 15-minutes but ended up taking 26-minutes after Leher struggled to moderate both candidates. The new debate format, agreed to by both campaigns and the moderator, featured six 15-minute conversations, each starting with a question and two-minute answers from each candidate. The second segment featured questions about the federal deficit. “I think it’s not just an economic issue, I think it’s a moral issue,” said Romney starting off the segment. “I think it’s, frankly, not moral for my generation to keep spending massively more than we take in, knowing those burdens are

going to be passed on to the next generation.” Romney continued and blamed president Obama for the deficit. “The president said he’d cut the deficit in half. Unfortunately, he doubled it.” That statement, that Obama has doubled the national debt, has been considered false by the Denver Post, the NY Daily News and factcheck.org. Obama overlooked the misstatement by Romney and stayed to his talking points. “The way we [cut the deficit] is: $2.50 for every cut, we ask for $1 of additional revenue, paid for by

“If I’m president I will help create 12 million new jobs in this country with rising incomes.”

-Mitt Romney asking those of us who have done very well in this country to contribute a little bit more to reduce the deficit,” said Obama. Romney quickly pounced on the statement. “You’ve been president four years. You said you’d cut the deficit in half. It’s now four years later. We still have trillion-dollar deficits,” said Romney. The third segment was on entitlements and begun with Obama saying that he and Romney had similar positions on Social Security. The entitlement portion quickly moved into a debate about Medicare. “The idea of cutting $716 billion from Medicare to be able to balance the additional cost of Obamacare is, in my opinion, a mistake,” said Romney. Obama then attacked Romney on his plan to for Medicare. “And the essence of [Rom-

Governor Mitt Romney(left) and President Barack Obama(right) laid out their vision for


Oct. 9, 2012

dEbATE 2012

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as Romney wins the debate ney’s] plan is that you would turn Medicare into a voucher program,” said Obama. “If you’re 54 or 55, you might want to listen ‘cause this - this will affect you.” When Lehrer asked Romney if he supported a voucher system, Romney said that it would be “step one” to entitlement reform. “If the government can be as efficient as the private sector and offer premiums that are as low as the private sector, people will be happy to get traditional Medicare or they’ll be able to get a private plan,” said Romney. “And when you move to a voucher system, you are putting

“I promised that I’d fight every single day on behalf of the American people. I’ve kept that promise.”

-Barack Obama seniors at the mercy of those insurance companies,” said Obama, trying to end the segment. Romney, Obama and Leher spoke over each other to end the segment with both sides agreeing there is a clear choice between both candidates on the issue of Medicare. The next segments were on regulation. Romney said he would repeal Dodd-Frank, a bank regulation bill passed after the 2008 financial crisis saying that it was “it wasn’t thought through properly.” Romney then attacked the president on “Obamacare.” “There was a survey done of small businesses across the country, said, what’s been the effect of Obamacare on your hiring plans? And three-quarters of them said it makes us less likely to hire people,” said Romney. Obama alluded to the healthcare law that Romney passed in Massachusetts in response.

“The irony is that we’ve seen this model works really well in Massachusetts, because Governor Romney did a good thing, working with Democrats in the state to set up what is essentially the identical model and as a consequence people are covered there,” said Obama, “it hasn’t destroyed jobs.” The last segment was on the role of the government itself, specifically in education. “So all federal funds, instead of going to the state or to the school district, I’d have go, if you will, follow the child and let the parent and the child decide,” said Romney. Obama appealed to his record to defend his view of the role of the federal government in education. “Through our Race to the Top program, we’ve worked with Republican and Democratic governors to initiate major reforms, ” said Obama. “When it comes to making college affordable one of the things that I did as president was we [cut] $60 billion to banks and lenders as middlemen for the student loan program.” The segment ended early because of time constraints. President Barack Obama was selected to be the first to make his final statement. “I also promised that I’d fight every single day on behalf of the American people, the middle class, and all those who were striving to get into the middle class,” said Obama. “I’ve kept that promise and if you’ll vote for me, then I promise I’ll fight just as hard in a second term.” Governor Mitt Romney made the final statement and attacked on the high and persistent unemployment rate under the Obama presidency. “We’ve had 43 straight months with unemployment above 8 percent,” said Romney. “If I’m president I will create help create 12 million new jobs in this country.” After the debate both the

the country at the debate, held Wednesday in Magness Arena. PHOTOS BY RYAN LUMPKIN

Romney and Obama team claimed victory. “The President was befuddled tonight,” said former New York Mayor, Rudy Giuliani in support of Romney. “This was as big of a presidential debate knockout that we’ve ever seen.” The Obama camp was quick to respond to accusations of losing the debate, accusing Romney of being “testy.” “We didn’t have a lot of zingers...[Obama] just laid out his

vision,” said senior adviser to the Obama Campaign, David Plouffe. “I don’t think [Romney] had a good night.” Most debate pundits and the blogosphere believed that Romney won the debate. Instant polling done by CNN showed that Romney won by 67 percent to 25 percent. Candy Crowley will host the next presidential debate on Tuesday, Oct. 16, at Hofstra University. The debate will feature a townmeeting style.


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Media

Oct. 9, 2012

3K media on campus for debate by sarah Ford News Editor

Approximately 3,000 credentialed video, online and print journalists were on site at the presidential debate Wednesday and stationed in the Media Filing Center inside the Hamilton Gymnasium, where they carried out reporting for their respective organizations. Many of the most recognizable news organizations were present, including CNN, FOX, CNBC, the Denver Post, NPR, the AP, CBS, PBC, POLITICO CSPAN and more. According to the university, 700 foreign journalists were also present, representing 47 countries. The Media Filing Center is traditionally set up at large events with expected national coverage in order to provide a location for journalists to file stories, report and do telecasts. The inside the filing room, lined with 20 large tables from back to front, was also equipped with telephones at each work station and 55 televisions placed on tables throughout. According to a press release by the university, there were 650 individual work spaces available inside the filing center, though there were additional people present acting as photographers and videographers who remained standing, bringing the total number of people inside to approximately 1,000. Placed along the side were outlets for different news stations, where broadcasters pre-recorded or

recorded material for their shows. Many prominent journalists and politicians were present throughout the room in affiliation with their respective news organizations. Several spoke to the importance of the debates at DU and the relevance to the election. “I think this is great for the students, and it is important we have this debate in an institution of higher education because so many of these issues will impact student’s abilities to get an education,” said Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. DU Political Science professor Seth Masket spoke further about the impact of hosting the presidential debate. “It is nice to have the focus of on us, and it is creating a very lively scholarly environment,” said Masket. Martin Bashir, an MSNBC anchor, called it a duty of the media to investigate the truth behind politics and candidate’s claims. “This is one of the finest universities in the country, and the people of this university expect us to find out what is going on,” said Bashir. Chair of the Democratic National Committee Debbie Wasserman Schultz spoke about the relevance of the debate for students and what it would tell them about how candidates would confront issues specific to them. “This is an important opportunity for Obama to highlight what he has done for college students,” she said. “It is also important these de-

ryan lumpkin|clarion

More than 700 foreign journalists travelled to Denver to cover the debates in the Ritchie Center

ryan lumpkin|clarion

David Plouffe, senior advisor to the President, spoke for the Obama campaign in Spin Alley.

bates are held on college campuses because it allows us to talk about that,” she said. Many journalists present spoke further about the duty of the media and its role in politics. “My criticism of the way we (the media) have covered the campaign is that’s been a horse race,” said MSNBC anchor Andrea Mitchell. Many celebrity journalists said they were excited for the different perspective the presidential debates could bring to the campaign. MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews agreed, stressing the debates as an opportunity for the candidates to show the American public a different, more human side of themselves. “I am always looking for three things: compassion, motive and spontaneity,” said Mathews. He said the unplanned moments of a debate can reveal who a candidate really is. “What you hear is the music of who they are,” said Matthews. “They need to show their compassion- their spirit and resolve,” he said. Throughout the debate, the hall was silent as reporters transcribed quotes from the candidates on their computers, took notes for future posts and followed Twitter. As the debate came to a close and candidates made their closing statements, reporters began to gather their materials for the ending portion of the night known as “Spin Alley.”

Spin Alley provides journalists a chance to get the perspective of each campaign on the outcome of the debate, provided by campaign surrogates who speak to reporters and provide their “spin” in the filing center as soon as the debate closes. Less than five minutes after Jim Leherer bid the audience good night, surrogate campaign strategists of the Romney campaign arrived in the Spin Room ready to speak with reporters. Those present from the Romney campaign included economic advisor Glenn Hubbard, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, advisor Eric Fehrnstrom , Utah Senator Orrin Hatch and Senator Marco Rubio. Approximately 20 minutes later the Obama surrogates filed in, including campaign manager Jim Messina, advisor David Plouffe, spokeswoman Jen Psaski and senior advisor David Axelrod. According to a press release by the university, in total there were 17 signs for Mr. Romney surrogates present in the debate hall, and five signs present for Mr. Obama’s surrogates. Media questioning to these surrogates lasted about half an hour as journalists circulated from speaker to speaker collecting quotes As the night closed in the media filing room, some remained at their desks for another hour to file their stories, with others returning to their hotels.


StUdent Voices

Oct. 9 2012

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Dummy candidates sympathize with politicians by hsing tseng Staff Writer

Three DU students stood in for presidential candidates President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney and debate moderator Jim Lehrer during a dress rehearsal for the presidential debate last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Pictures featuring the students shaking hands and standing at the podiums were featured on the cover of the New York Times and in the Wall Street Journal Wednesday. Carl Johnson, executive director of student activities and faculty adviser for Undergraduate Student Government, approached each student individually with the opportunity. Dia Mohamed, USG Natural Science, Math and Engineering senator and junior biology student from Aurora, said he didn’t know what to expect from acting as the president, but felt that the dress rehearsal went smoothly. “When I stood behind the podium, I tried to imitate what the President would do. ‘Maybe the President would stand like this’ or ‘maybe he kicks his feet together like this’ or ‘maybe I should look around,’” said Mohamed. Zach Gonzales, USG Arts and Humanities senator and a senior from Pueblo, majoring in economics and math stood in for Romney. According to Gonzales,

the students were surprised by how much they were expected to do while technicians tested equipment. “Day one, our preparation consisted of getting out of bed and putting a suit on, frankly, but it turns out we were expected to do much more. Day two, we all did our homework on party platforms and staged a mock debate - it went off without a hitch,” said Gonzalez. Sam Garry, a USG Daniels College of Business senator and sophomore finance major from Fort Collins stood in for moderator Jim Lehrer and stumped the Mohamed and Gonzales students on a couple mock questions. About halfway through Wednesday morning’s rehearsal, Lehrer himself took over for Garry, which is when the students realized they had received tickets for the Debate Hall due to their involvement with USG. “We were probably on stage half an hour or so with Jim, then we got off stage and Sam said, ‘I think you should check your email,’” said Gonzales. Garry felt that watching the debate made the experience much more personal. “It was really cool, thinking ‘I was in that place,’” said Garry. Mohamed jokingly described watching the debate as a “beenthere done-that” experience. “While Jim was telling us, ‘The President’s going to come

out of here and the Governor out of here’ we were like, ‘Oh, we know the drill,’” said Mohamed. For Gonzales, the dress rehearsal made him more sympathetic to the candidates. “I remember standing in that

spot during the rehearsal and thinking, ‘Wow. Mitt Romney’s going to be standing in this spot. What’s he going to be thinking?’ said Gonzales. “The experience really humanized the candidates for me.”

A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP STUDY Have you had the experience of beginning a good relationship that became problematic? Would you be interested in describing your experience so that others could benefit from your story? Be a participant in a research study by completing surveys (about ½ hour) and qualify for a prize drawing.

ryan lumpkin|clarion

Mohamed (left) and Garry (right) assisted technicians setting up for the debate.

If you are a woman who has ended a romantic relationship that may or may not have been emotionally or physically abusive and might like to participate in this study, Please contact Dr. Bobbi Vollmer, Counseling Psychology, Morgridge College of Education, at bvollmer@du.edu for more information.


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StUdent Voices

Oct. 9, 2012

ryan lumpkin|clarion

Only a little over 1,000 seats in Magness Arena were filled during the debate by lottery winners, volunteers and campaign members. The arena typically seats 6,000 to 8,000 people.

Students experience debate firsthand by dalton handy Staff writer

The first debate of the 2012 presidential election meant much more than a day off class for a group of 270 students selected to watch the debate from inside Magness Arena. Sophomores Wyeth Seidel and Jordan Rook, along with freshman student Gabrielle Hammer, were among the lucky students admitted. “It was a truly profound experience,” said Seidel, who sat in the student section, which he described the middle of the arena. The first debate to be held in Colorado appeared to be a success, reported both Seidel and Hammer.

“I felt like [DU] dealt with the publicity really well,” said Hammer. “I felt like I was in a safe environment.” Seidel agrees the university handled the high-pressure situation well. “The school did a phenomenal job,” said Seidel. “The fact that it went off without a hitch says immense things about the people and students [at DU].” Both Seidel and Hammer felt their own political views had not been drastically altered after witnessing Obama and Romney hash out their views on a variety of subjects, ranging from taxes to the future of Obamacare. However, both did agree that the Republican candidate,

Romney, exceeded expectations. “I don’t like calling debate winners,” said Seidel, who acknowledged that most people would likely declare Romney the winner. Perhaps the only blemish on the event for the students was the moderation. At times, moderator Jim Lehrer appeared to struggle to contain the two candidates and adhere to time limits, according to Seidel. “The moderation was almost like the NFL replacement refs,” said Seidel. “Jim Lehrer had a tough time controlling the candidates.” The moderation failed to dampen the debate spirit in Hammer, who said she is excited to see how the remaining debates play out, adding that she expects

the election to be an intense battle between the two candidates. “It was probably the most surreal experience of my life,” said Rook. “I got to see possibly two of the best orators and it was just a fantastic opportunity.” The experience was a result of a lottery run by the Undergraduate Student Government in which the names were randomly drawn, with each student having been entered once automatically, and additionally for students who attended passport events. USG notified winners via email, even if they were absent from the drawing. Those who did not respond to the email lost tickets to a secondary drawing on Tuesday.


11

StUdent Voices

Oct. 9, 2012

www.duclarion.com

Pioneer volunteer courts multinational media by emma mcKay Copy Editor

At 7:30 a.m. on debate day I awoke feeling disappointed I hadn’t won a ticket the day before. As I pulled on my somewhat ill-fitting volunteer polo shirt and nerdy baseball cap, I had to remind myself why I was volunteering so much of my time (and sleep) to an event that I wasn’t even going to get to see. I was volunteering because I wanted to be a part of all the craziness that was going on around campus that day, ticket or not. And it was crazy. My day started in Driscoll Underground where I found out where I would be stationed as a “wayfinder.” Being a wayfinder just meant that I would stand in one area for my entire four hour shift answering questions. Equipped with my new volunteer sign that announced “I’m happy to help!” I set off for the corner of Evans and University. Little did I know that the entire Driscoll Green area had been blocked off, so I spent a good 15 minutes walking the fence’s perimeter before I realized the only way out was through Driscoll. I felt a little bit ridiculous. I was the person with the “happy

to help” sign, and yet I was the one who needed it. Finally, I reached my corner. But I soon found out that my corner wasn’t flooded with people needing help. Within my first 40 minutes of the shift, I watched news vans go by and the occasional guy in a suit hurring past me. I justified my time there by telling myself that should someone need help, I’d be there. But then a friend who was also volunteering came to visit me (her job was the same as mine, but to walk around campus instead of staying put), and she let me in on a secret. The place to be as a volunteer was the corner of Buchtel and University. It was where all of the media personnel were going through security to get into the Ritchie Center. I only felt a little bit guilty when I abandoned my own post to walk there with her. My friend was right. On this corner, everywhere you looked there was an important person in a business suit or someone holding a giant camera. Within my first five minutes there, I saw a news crew go live, and I think I may have even been in the background of their screen shot. Compared to Evans and University, this

was certainly the ultimate corner. Every couple minutes we’d answer a question. Towards the beginning, most were asking us how we could make the security line go faster. Many reporters I talked to had accents and I’d wonder which city in the world would be hearing from them. It was exciting to know that cities all around the world would be hearing about DU today. I’d always try to read the names on everyone’s press passes just in case I didn’t realize I was talking to someone famous. Every time I saw someone whose tag said CNN or MSNBC, I’d get really excited and keep myself from squealing. Highlights of the morning included directing Scott Pelley from 60 minutes to the security line, helping Juan Williams from Fox News find a cab and showing Andrea Mitchell from MSNBC to the golf cart that would take her and her crew to the stage in front of Daniel’s. I couldn’t have asked for a more exciting volunteer experience. Even though I didn’t get to go to the debate itself, I felt like I had an insider view. I’d put on that nerdy hat and polo shirt again in a second.

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Editorial Board sarah Ford

News Editor

gigi peccolo

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anna gaUldin

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aleX proietti

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ryan lUmpKin

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Presidential Debate Magazine 10.9