On Friday, the College of Charleston’s campus was set abuzz by Senator Ted Cruz’s rally, held on campus in an apparent attempt to secure the support young voters and South Carolinians in general on the day prior to the South Carolina Republican primary. And in terms of production value, Cruz certainly did not disappoint.
The rally featured Fox News personality Sean Hannity (who was taping an episode of his show live, featuring an interview with Cruz), Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson and several others who came out in support of the presidential candidate. The downtown portion of the city was practically shut down by the interest in the event, and it even took the Daily Pennsylvanian team covering it over 40 minutes to find a parking spot for it.
However, the event seemed to be conspicuously overlooked by one particularly salient group: the campus’ college students themselves.
“I didn’t even know he was coming,” Charleston student Heath Gray said. “There wasn’t really big publicity about it.”
“They probably sent us an email or something,” Heath’s brother and fellow student William Gray chimed in.
This sentiment was repeated by multiple other college students walking by the rally after it had finished, and unsurprisingly, the rally itself was largely composed of a demographic much older than the average college student. But that is not to say that the College of Charleston’s students have not been involved with the political process as a whole.
“There’s been a lot of support for Bernie Sanders on campus,” Charleston student Ethan Anderson said. “There was a huge rally on Calhoun Street, with people just flooding the streets. And Donald Trump has come up a surprising amount.
“This is probably the most politically-active I’ve seen campus in my three years here,” he added.
These remarks are consistent with the national trend of college students supporting Sanders — though he came in second to Hillary Clinton in Penn’s mock caucus — as well as Cruz’s poor performance at the same mock caucus, where he failed to garner any support.