Has President Obama earned a second term?

CONTACT:  Kira Jastive, 617-358-1240, kjastive@bu.edu

Boston University’s November 1st Great Debate offers opportunity to engage in election issues

(Boston)On November 1st, Boston University’s Department of Journalism in the College of Communication (COM) will host “The Great Debate: Has President Obama Earned a Second Term?” The debate, which focuses on the major issues of the 2012 presidential election, will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Tsai Performance Center, 685 Commonwealth Avenue. The event is free and open to the public.

The Great Debate follows the format of the Cambridge and Oxford University Union Societies’ public discussions. Two teams, each comprised of two guest speakers and one Boston University student, will present opposing arguments and rebuttals around national and international issues that will factor into the outcome of the November 6th election.  Audience members will have the opportunity to participate in the conversation and will ultimately vote to determine the winning team.

Try outs for BU Student debaters were held earlier this week.  The following students were chosen to participate: Aaron Heller (CAS ’14) and Michael Neminski (CAS ’15).

Guest debaters will include:

– Mary Anne Marsh, a Democratic political analyst on the FOX News Channel and commentator for The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, The Washington Post, The New York Times, and USA Today.

– William R. Keylor, a Boston University professor of international relations and history and author of A World of Nations: The International Order since 1945.

– Bing West, former Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs in the Reagan administration, former Marine and co-author of the recently published Into the Fire: A Firsthand Account of the Most Extraordinary Battle in the Afghan War. He is the Marine Corps Heritage Prize winner for his book, The March Up: Taking Baghdad with the First Marine Division.

– John Podhoretz, former speechwriter for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. H. Bush, conservative columnist for the New York Post and editor of Commentary, the conservative American journal of politics, Judaism, social and cultural issues.

    The Great Debate, in its 30th year, is chaired by Bob Zelnick. Mr. Zelnick is a professor of journalism and national security affairs at Boston University and a Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution. Prior to that, he spent 21 years at ABC News covering Moscow, Israel, the Pentagon, the Gulf War, Congress and national politics. He is the holder of two Gavel Awards for distinguished legal reporting and two Emmys. Professor Zelnick is also the author of seven books.

    Established in 1947, the Boston University College of Communication (COM) specializes in Film and Television, Journalism, and Mass Communication, Advertising and Public Relations. With more than 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students, COM offers a strong liberal arts core with a heavy focus on preparing students for careers as communication professionals.  COM’s faculty is a blend of traditional academicians and widely- experienced professionals.

    Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized institution of higher education and research. With more than 33,000 students, it is the fourth largest independent university in the United States. BU contains 16 colleges and schools along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes which are central to the school’s research and teaching mission.