Shorter students hosting mock debate
Though the last official presidential debate took place well over a week ago, there’s still one more left on the agenda.
Senators Barack Obama and John McCain will host a debate at Shorter College next week. Granted, the debate won’t feature the actual presidential candidates, but the issues dished out Tuesday will be as real as they come.
Shorter freshman Melonie Hardy will play the part of Arizona senator and presidential republican candidate John McCain. Sophomore Will Cates will portray democratic presidential candidate and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama. Both are students currently enrolled in Dr. Chuck Wynn’s American government class.
Melonie Hardy & Will Cates face off as John McCain & Illinois Sen. Barack Obama in the mock debate.
“We will be debating based on party platforms and position statements,” said Wynn. “We are going to be as accurate as possible in the debates, we will not slant the candidates’ positions. We will be giving out what the candidates have been saying accurately.”
To help ensure that accuracy, Wynn explained that a five-member prep team made up of Shorter students has been assigned to each candidate. There is also a six-student journalistic team working on debate preparation. Each team has been charged with developing questions that can be answered to help clarify their candidate’s position on the issues, Wynn said.
The debate will cover topics related to the war in Iraq, energy and the economy. It will also touch on global warming, taxes, healthcare, trade, illegal immigration, education and foreign policy. Social issues like abortion and gay marriage will also be debated.
The students participating in the mock debate are part of a new type of classroom experience at the college, called the Shorter Learning Community Model. Wynn explained that his political science class is paired together with a communications class and a critical thinking class.
The debate, planned for Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 7 p.m., will be held in Brookes Chapel on the Shorter College campus. The public is invited to attend.
Additionally, the class is planning a mock election for Oct. 29-31. The election is only open to Shorter students, faculty and staff, and will also include a survey for the purpose of collecting demographic information.