Shepherdstown Opera House hosts a watch party for the first presidential debate.

Shepherdstown Opera House hosts presidential debate watch party

(The PICKET)– Hillary Clinton fans had the advantage at the first presidential debate watch party Monday in the Shepherdstown Opera House.

Fans of Republican candidate Donald Trump stayed near the back of the room as the debate began.

“I feel like I’m the odd one out,” said Spenser VanHoose political science major “Everyone has their I’m With Her pins on, and I really don’t like Hillary so this should be interesting.”

The debate was hosted by the Jefferson County Democratic party. It lasted an hour and 30 minutes and was separated into six segments each lasting 15 minutes.

Several people expressed their dislike for Trump by booing him when he would speak and yelling at the screen for him to close his mouth. They laughed repeatedly at his facial reactions to Clinton’s opening words.

Majority of the audience clapped when Clinton spoke about increasing women’s wages, increasing the job market with clean energy, and that Donald Trump lives in his own reality.

The crowd booed when Trump spoke about crime in inner cities. Clinton lines such as “trumped-up trickle down,” “you live in your own reality,” and “he shouldn’t have his hands near the nuclear codes” elicited large cheers from the crowd. Trump’s lines “that’s called business” in reference to the recent housing crisis and Trump’s assessment of the stop-and-frisk policy resulted in loud boos and gasps from the audience.

When the debate was over several people gathered outside to share their opinions.

“The clear winner was Hillary Clinton. Trump reminds me of a bratty teenage girl rooted in ignorance,” said Shepherdstown resident Audrey Walton.

“When you resort to telling your opponent that she isn’t nice, and you just keep interrupting her to say, wrong, wrong, wrong, then you’ve clearly lost a debate. Hillary won,” said Shepherdstown resident Rebecca Kamp.

Shepherdstown resident Tabby Palomo was one of the few Trump fans.

“I’m clearly outnumbered tonight, and although I think that Hillary said things most American’s want to hear, I’m taking a chance on Trump,” Palomo said. “Hillary say’s all of the right things but she doesn’t prove them in her actions.”

Carol, a Shepherdstown resident, said that he thought Clinton was “more prepared” and also called Trump’s performance in the debate “shameful.”

Nicole, another local, had predicted a win for Clinton and felt that she had indeed bested Trump in the debate. She said that Trump “has no intellectual ability” but did say that both candidates “started strong with presentations of their plans.”

Susan, who was formerly a supporter of Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, was swayed by Clinton’s debate performance and now considers herself a “fan.” She said “Hillary won, hands down” and that she was “calm and never interrupted Trump.” Before the debate, Susan was worried that Trump would “listen to his advisors” but in the end said that Trump came off as “ignorant.”

The Opera House will be hosting watch parties for both the vice presidential debate on Oct. 4 and the next presidential debate on Oct. 9.


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