On November 6, 2015, the Democratic candidates for president will hold a forum at Winthrop University. This is not an officially sanctioned, formal debate from the Democratic Party, but is an opportunity to get to know the candidates a bit better. Top Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley will attend this forum, a frequent stop for presidential hopefuls. Barack Obama and Mike Huckabee both went to Winthrop for a visit on their 2008 presidential campaign, while Mitt Romney was at Winthrop University while challenging Obama in the general election in 2012.
Read below for where the forum will take place:
Winthrop University is a public university founded in 1886 in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Rock Hill is about an hour and half away from Charlotte, North Carolina, and an hour away from South Carolina’s capital city, Columbia. This area is a pivotal one for Democrats, as the Democratic National Convention was in Charlotte in 2012 and South Carolina has the fourth primary in the presidential election. South Carolina holds nine electoral college votes in the presidential election and has voted Republican in nine of the last 10 presidential elections.
The enrollment as of 2011 at Winthrop is 5,913 students and this is an area where Bernie Sanders needs to make up ground on front runner Hillary Clinton. The former Secretary of State owns 71 percent of the vote in South Carolina, as compared to just 15 percent for Sanders and 2 percent for Martin O’Malley. Current polling has Clinton as a 22.3 percent favorite on Sanders overall, while O’Malley holds 1.8 percent of the vote.