Students Stage Mock Presidential Campaign Based on Real Issues

November 09, 2015

During fall semester, Saint Leo University students in broad range of academic classes have created a fictitious (but realistic) two-party American presidential campaign. Students and have assumed the roles of candidates, staff, press, security consultants, and other key players. The finale comes with a debate between the fictitious GOP and Democratic presidential nominees at 7 p.m., Friday, November 13, in the Greenfelder-Denlinger Boardrooms of the Student Community Center at University Campus (pictured from previous debate).

The public is invited to come and watch – including young people age 14 and up.

Democrat Rachel Bowman, who is actually political science major Zoe Mathieu, will debate GOP candidate Chuck Franklin, who is Burke Tomaselli, a history and political science major. Each will be responsible for articulating the platforms of their respective political party and will answer questions with only limited time available to each of them. Their fictitious vice presidential running mates, played by Emily Mincey (GOP) and Jacob Gates (Democrat) have already debated issues including reform and immigration (pictured).

Saint Leo debate party platforms and campaign materials are available for viewing at the election website: for those interested. The final debate will also be livestreamed from that site for online students and others unable to attend.

To add to the experience, the audience will be asked to cast their votes for the winner following the presidential debate experience.

For information, contact Greg Kunzweiler at or (352) 588-6578.