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2012 Archives

Presidential Debate Watch Parties

October 2, 2012

Obama and Romney making their acceptance speeches at their conventionsSMU is hosting a series of watch parties for the televised presidential debates. Three of the debates will be between President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney, and the fourth will be between Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan.

The first debate watch party will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 3, in O’Donnell Auditorium (Room 2130) of the Owen Arts Center, 6101 Bishop Blvd. The debate is between Obama and Romney.

After viewing the debate broadcasts, community members will have an opportunity to participate in a public debate about the event. The SMU debate program will moderate the event and provide a balloting opportunity for those in attendance. 

Spinning the Dials

SMU Professors Rita Kirk and Dan Schill will be in Denver on Wednesday overseeing a group of participants recording immediate reactions to the debate by spinning dials that measure their minute-to-minute responses.

It's called Real Time Response and it does just that: It measures participants' reactions to the positions, posturing and in-fighting of the candidates almost as soon as the words leave their mouths.


The program is sponsored by the Meadows School’s Division of Communication Studies.

The times and locations of the other events, which will follow a similar format, are:

  • Oct. 11 at 7 p.m. in O’Donnell Auditorium (Room 2130) of Owen Arts Center, 6101 Bishop Blvd. this debate is between Biden and Ryan.
  • Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in Room 241 in Umphrey Lee Center, 3300 Dyer Street. This debate is between Obama and Romney.
  • Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. in Room 241 in Umphrey Lee Center, 3300 Dyer Street. This debate is between Obama and Romney.

All events are free and open to the public.

In addition, SMU has assembled a team of experts to talk to the news media about the debates and the campaigns.