On the evening of Tuesday, Nov. 8, two very different groups with very different goals will be doing the same exact thing: watching and waiting.
For the Penn Democrats and the Penn College Republicans, the election coverage will bring a welcome end to a highly divisive campaign and the opportunity to watch in shared anticipation as live results roll in.
Penn Dems, the University’s organization of democratic students, is co-hosting a watch party with the Pennsylvania Democratic Party at Cavanaugh’s Restaurant and Sports Bar.
College junior and Penn Dems President Jana Korn said she encourages students to volunteer during the final week of the election.
Korn expressed optimism about election night.
“If all goes well, they’ll be able to call the results pretty early on in the night for president,” Korn said, knocking three times on a wooden table.
The watch-party begins at 8 p.m., but Korn expects it to extend late into the night.
“I’m assuming that all the senate races will take a lot longer, so it’s going to be a long night,” she said. “But I’m looking forward to being able to celebrate with the Democrats.”
College sophomore and Director of Communications for Penn College Republicans Ryan Snyder similarly anticipates a long night.
“The Toomey-McGinty race will probably be one of the closest in the country,” Snyder said, referring to Pennsylvania’s hotly contested Senate race. “It’s definitely going to come down to a wire [and] we’re hoping Toomey pulls it out.”
The College Republicans, who Snyder said are “focusing a bit on down ballot candidates,” will view election coverage from a house whose location will soon be posted on the group’s Facebook page.
“We’ll have probably 30 or so members come by." Snyder said, adding, “Even Dems are welcome.”
Penn Dems and Penn College Republicans are not the only groups holding events on election night.
The Government and Politics Association, Penn’s non-partisan and largest student political union, will also host a viewing party. Renting out the second floor of Harvest Bar & Grill for a night of free food and election coverage, GPA will fill out posters in red or blue as the results return.
College senior and GPA President Sarah Simon expressed her excitement for a contest hosted by the group.
“GPA is hosting a sweet (20)16 election prediction contest,” she said. “People can submit predictions for senate, gubernatorial and electoral college races ... we’re going to have a live leader board that gets updated as races come in.”
The contest, which GPA’s Facebook page describes as “March Madness, but for politics,” accepts online submissions until 11:59 p.m. on election eve. A cash prize will be rewarded to the most accurate predictor of each race.
“It’s been one hell of a presidential election, that’s for sure,” Simon said, “but you do what you can with the candidates you’ve got.”
Clarification: This article has been updated to reflect that the Government and Politics Association is non-partisan, rather than bipartisan.
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