Campus & Community / News

BBC, Al Jazeera on guest list for University’s election-night party

For the second time this fall, international media organizations will use the University of Denver as the backdrop for their coverage and analysis of the 2012 presidential race.

And regardless of what results trickle in as they broadcast live from the University’s presidential election-night watch party—5 p.m. to midnight Nov. 6 in Driscoll Underground—members of the school’s rival political groups will be making last-ditch efforts to get fellow students to the polls.

“I don’t want just my Democratic friends to vote; I want all my friends to vote,” says senior and DU College Democrats President Lindsey Goodwin, who has been working alongside DU College Republicans for the last two years to hold nonpartisan events to get out the vote.

Goodwin’s work, which she’ll continue at a local campaign office on election night, has been leading up to the University’s two-day election buzz: on-campus news broadcasts, on-air appearances by students and professors, and an election-night watch party in one of the race’s most hotly contested states.

Here’s what’s happening on campus:


7:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5–1:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 6

Hear BBC Radio hosts as they broadcast live from the Nelson Hall Dining Room. Tune in to hear interviews with Assistant Professor Peter Hanson and several University of Denver students.


Election night

Local and national media outlets—including Al Jazeera’s Los Angeles bureau—will join students in Driscoll Underground for live reports throughout the night. This will be where all the action is—whether you want to study, follow coverage, or grab free pizza and drinks, says Jill Duffy, assistant director of student activities.

Watch party attendees also can follow along with election results as they unfold by using an interactive electoral map, courtesy of Undergraduate Student Government (USG) Senator Craig Hirokawa. The map should go a long way toward building viewer engagement in an election with everything from the debt crisis to health care at stake, says Parker Calbert, USG vice president.

“It seemed that in 2008, the nation had relatively made up their mind in support of [Barack Obama], whereas this year, the results are far less certain,” Calbert notes. “Gallup polls have shown relative volatility, which will be interesting in evaluating if the historic trends in polling are applicable to the 2012 election.”

That and a recent Pew Research Center report that shows presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in a dead heat among early voters means it’s increasingly important to get voters mobilized now, Goodwin says.

“There’s nothing you can do once the polls close,” Goodwin says. “You just sit back and hope for the best, and you’re glued to your TV, waiting for the numbers to come in.

“We’re gonna stay up as late as it takes to know what the results are.”






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