By Seamus Brennan
On Monday, Sept. 26, a viewing party for the first presidential debate of the 2016 general election was held in Crossroads. Sponsored by SPUD, SGA Senate, and the Office of Student Involvement, the party included a screening of the first general election debate with pizza and snacks. Representatives from the Holy Cross College Republicans and College Democrats were present at the gathering.
Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democratic contender Hillary Clinton faced off in 90-minute debate at Hofstra University in New York, consisting of six 15-minute segments. Hosted by NBC News Anchor Lester Holt, the first debate focused on issues of the economy, national security, foreign policy, and race relations within the United States.
With the controversial public opinion of each candidate and heated political climate in the United States, the television ratings of Monday’s debate grew 23 percent from the first general election debate of 2012, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
While many mainstream media outlets have declared Clinton as the winner of the first debate, online polls from sources, such as Time, Fox, CNBC, and The Hill, have designated Trump as the winner. These polls are not scientific, however, and national polls released within the next week will indicate the results of each candidate’s debate performance. For the past several weeks, national polls have indicated that the race is nearly tied.
“I doubt either candidate truly ‘earned’ a vote based solely on their debate performance,” said Bryan Dextradeur ‘17, co-chair of the College Republicans. “It is up to all of us to ‘turn down the noise’ of media sensationalism and critically evaluate the qualifications, characters, economic policies, and foreign policies of each of the major candidates.”
The second presidential debate of the 2016 general election will take place on Sunday, Oct. 9, five days after the vice presidential debate on Thursday, Oct. 4. Students should check club and organization announcements in anticipation of future school-sanctioned debate events.