Last week, KBYU sent me over to Denver to analyze the first presidential debate, and it was one cool experience.
We left early Tuesday morning and drove the 8.5ish hours to Denver in one of BYU's luxurious 12-passenger vans. There were nine of us, two communications professors, four print journalists, 2 broadcast journalists, and one political science student.
Tuesday night we got settled in, and prepped for the debate. For me, that meant going over the debate topics and subtopics and trying to anticipate which questions would be asked. It also meant that I needed to evaluate what each candidate needed to accomplish in order to "win."
|On our way to University of Denver|
Wednesday morning we were up bright and early and on our way to the University of Denver campus. After we got there we set up our work station, and then went to explore downtown Denver. We saw the state Capitol building, the Denver Post, City Hall, the Money Museum, and had lunch on 16th Ave. Denver's a pretty cool city.
We spent the hours leading up to the debate at Debatefest, a huge rally complete with local bands, a live Twitter feed, and every issue/candidate booth you could ever imagine.
Wednesday night was when I really started working. We watched the debate in a room full of reporters and as soon as the candidates started hugging their wives we went to work. Karen and Alexis wrote the broadcast package while I went to work on my analysis. I won't bore you with my complete analysis, but the nice thing about being an analyst and not a journalist is that I can be more adventurous in what I say. I can even declare a winner. Later that night, I talked to a few of the Daily Universe reporters about the debate and you can read their articles here and here.
A couple hours of sleep later we were on our way back to the University to film our segment. While we were waiting for the sun to come up and give us enough light to film, we literally ran into Senator Hatch(pretty unheard of), and were able to snag him for an interview. Those fancy D.C. people aren't usually around, so that was cool. He asked us when BYU girls got so beautiful, and we were sufficiently flattered.
We filmed our bit, emailed the edited package back to BYU for the noon news and hopped back in the van to drive back to Provo. Here's a link to our 11 News at Noon segment, we're the first five minutes. Pretend my voice sounds normal, and that I'm not standing like a noob. It was cold, ok?
But in all seriousness this is one of the best experiences, if not the best experience, that I have had here at BYU. It's so awesome to have the opportunity to jump head first into field that you're interested in before you graduate. This quick trip reaffirmed my knowledge that politics is where I belong, and it feels pretty good.
PS: This is my 200th post!