Wednesday night proved to be another spirited and informative political debate at JMU. About fifty people sat in the audience in the lecture hall that evening. A few were from the Harrisonburg/Rockingham County community while most were enrolled at James Madison University. Six students, two from each of the College Democrats, Madison Liberty, and the College Republicans spoke about their political beliefs and the positions of their party. Katie Pillis and Mitch Weissman voiced the Democratic platform, Luke Wachob and Helen Shibut represented Madison Liberty, and Nicole Clarke and Cole Trower stood for the Republicans.
In the first round, each group had the opportunity to pose a question, while the remainder of the debate centered around queries fielded from the audience. Topics discussed included: drone strikes and U.S. foreign policy, the drug war, Obamacare, and government subsidies. The entire event lasted about an hour and a half.
For those who were unable to attend the debate, below is a video from the first hour. Please note that there are two minor gaps in the video, first due to a small mechanical mishap and second as a result of a request from one of the debaters to delete a comment. Nevertheless, the video should prove useful to assess the philosophy and prowess of each group and the student representatives who participated in this discussion.
A special thanks to Rick Showalter for the images for this piece.