Media Contact:University Relations
202 Hofstra Hall
Date: Oct 31, 2011
Hofstra University to Host Presidential Debate in 2012
University hosting presidential debate for second time
To be held on October 16, 2012
Monday, October 31, 2011….Today the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that it had chosen Hofstra University for the site of its October 16, 2012 Presidential Debate, which will be in the “town meeting” format. The Commission on Presidential Debates, a nonprofit, nonpartisan corporation, has sponsored and produced every presidential and vice-presidential debate since 1988. Hofstra University hosted the third and final presidential debate of the 2008 election cycle, between then Senator Barack Obama and Senator John McCain, on October 15, 2008.
"I am absolutely delighted that the Commission has chosen to return to Hofstra University for one of America's most important political events," said Hofstra University President Stuart Rabinowitz. "It was an extraordinary experience for our students and faculty in 2008 and allowed our community to witness, first-hand, the democratic process. I am so pleased that another generation of Hofstra students will be able to witness history and become involved in an active and meaningful way."
The University will again host an election-themed event series to inspire and engage students. "During the last presidential election, Educate '08, our award-winning event series, gave students the opportunity to learn from some of our country's greatest political minds and journalists, to travel to primary sites, or to volunteer or intern with political or media organizations; and it touched students and faculty in almost every academic discipline,” said President Rabinowitz. “With Hofstra's unique academic strengths and our vibrant academic programs in political science, journalism and mass media, business, medicine and law, we will take advantage of the special opportunities a presidential debate offers. In 2008, thousands of students were involved - speaking out at town hall meetings, interning and volunteering, helping with Debate Watch programs, or taking special courses, and we expect even greater participation in 2012. We will use our experience and every opportunity to involve students, faculty and the community in this historic event."
President Rabinowitz also announced that David S. Mack, Hofstra alumnus and secretary of the Boar d of Trustees, has made a commitment to help underwrite the cost of hosting the 2012 presidential debate. “The generosity of David Mack allows us to host an event of this magnitude, benefitting thousands of students and showcasing our great University, without using tuition dollars. We are grateful for his leadership and commitment to Hofstra and the democratic process.”
The Peter S. Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency, the Chair in Presidential Studies, our Senior Presidential Fellows (currently former Governor Howard Dean and political consultant and CNN contributor Ed Rollins) and Hofstra's presidential conferences make the University one of the very few institutions in the country with a unique focus on the presidency. Beginning in 1982 with a conference on Franklin D. Roosevelt, Hofstra has presented a conference on each president thereafter, culminating in the 11th presidential conference, "William Jefferson Clinton: The 'New Democrat' from Hope," held in November 2005. The George W. Bush conference is currently scheduled for 2015.
The University is also home to the interdisciplinary Center for Civic Engagement and the National Center for Suburban Studies, a non-partisan research institution dedicated to promoting objective, academically rigorous study of suburbia's problems and promise.
"Hosting the debate will allow us to showcase Hofstra University and Long Island, our nation's first suburb, to a national and international audience," said President Rabinowitz. "We are looking forward to again welcoming journalists from around the world to our campus."
Hofstra University will again use the David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex as the venue for the debate, and the adjoining Mack Physical Education Building as home for the media center, which will host hundreds of journalists from around the world and all major networks, as well as supporting services for the Commission on Presidential Debates. Other Hofstra University facilities have been selected for support services for media and visitors. The University once again received unanimous support from local, regional, statewide and federal officials, as well as all local and regional public agencies.
The October 15, 2008 debate at Hofstra University was a 90-minute debate (beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern) focused on the Economy and Domestic Policy, with candidates seated at a table with moderator Bob Schieffer of CBS News. Candidates questioned in turn with two-minute responses, followed by five minutes of open discussion for each question. It was viewed by approximately 56.5 million Americans (Data provided by Nielsen Media Research). Hofstra University also hosted the October 2010 New York State Gubernatorial Debate, in partnership with Newsday and Cablevision.
Extended video coverage of 2008 debate week and Educate '08 highlights is available at http://www.hofstra.edu/debate/debate_media_gallery.html
Information about the 2012 debate schedule and site selection process may be found at http://www.debates.org
ABOUT HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY
Hofstra University, located in Hempstead, New York, approximately 25 miles east of Manhattan, is a dynamic private institution where approximately 11,500 students choose from more than 140 undergraduate and 155 graduate programs in liberal arts and sciences, business, communication, education, health and human services, and honors studies; as well as the Hofstra-North Shore LIJ School of Medicine and the Maurice A. Deane School of Law. Hofstra University, which was founded in 1935, has more than 110,000 alumni. Hofstra offers a renowned and excellent faculty, cutting edge technology, extensive library resources, and internships and educational programs that appeal to students' interests and abilities.
About Ticket Availability
Hofstra University is very pleased to host the October 16, 2012 presidential debate. The debate itself is produced and sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD), a non-partisan, non-profit organization, which controls all aspects of debate production. Ticket availability for the debate itself will be extremely limited.
All of the tickets allocated to Hofstra University from the Commission on Presidential Debates will be distributed to current students in the days before the debate, as recommended by the CPD and consistent with past practices of debate hosts, including Hofstra in 2008. President Rabinowitz has already clearly stated that he, along with all administrators and faculty, will not take seats within the debate hall but will instead watch the debate at a campus simulcast, in order to allow the maximum number of Hofstra students to attend the debate.
All students who are interested in attending the debate should look for instructions to sign up in the fall of 2012, and not contact the CPD. Tickets will not be available through Hofstra University personnel, and tickets are not available through any means at this point in time.
Related Link: Commission on Presidential Debates