Pub serves as theater for Democratic debate

Jenna Staul

Professor’s Pub became a haven for Democratic debate watchers last night who lined the pub’s bar with drinks and beer in hand, exchanging typical Thursday night bar banter with political discussion.

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama proved powerful draws as Democrats came in droves to watch this second round of presidential primary debates, filling the bar and dwarfing the previous night’s Republican showing.

“I’m not surprised by the number of people here,” said Lauren Szymanski, senior integrated social studies major, one of the many people who filled the pub to watch the debate. “I expected a good turn out.”

Patrick Burke, president of the College Democrats

“I think the turnout shows that people are ready for a change after eight years of the Bush administration,” he said. “I can’t endorse any one candidate yet, but I know I’m going to support whoever the Democrats nominate. I think either of them will make a great impact if elected president.”

Jessica Joseph, senior political science and psychology major

“I don’t think watching the debate at the bar is any different because I would have been watching it at home anyway,” she said. “Our generation is waning in terms of political activism. Events like this engage people.”

Sam Chambers, freshman political science major

“I came because I’m a big fan of Hillary, and I want to hear some things answered before Super Tuesday,” he said. “It’s a good time. You get to understand other people’s points of view and interact with their opposing opinions. It shows that people are interested in what the candidates have to say.”

Steven Hook, chair-elect of the political science department.

“I think this is fantastic that people turned out,” he said. “I haven’t decided who I’m voting for yet – I was a Chris Dodd guy. I do wish they were talking about the war. I think that is the biggest issue.”

Ryan Pochedly, senior marketing major

“It’s Thursday night. It’s my drinking night,” he said. “And I’m going to watch the debate anyway. I want them to make a legitimate deadline to leave Iraq. They talk about it, but they beat around the bush.”

Contact student politics reporter Jenna Staul at [email protected].