On Monday, October 18, the College Republicans at the University of Washington hosted a “Hillary for Prison” event in the campus’ Red Square commons area.
The event included a cardboard cutout of Hillary Clinton placed in a jail cell made of PVC pipe, and Chevy Swanson, the chapter’s Presidential Election Coordinator, dressed up as Donald Trump.
According to Jessie Gamble, president of the UW College Republicans, the goal of the event was to get students “engaged in discussion…about the latest Wikileaks or the Benghazi scandal.”
The response so far has been overwhelmingly positive: “People from [across the] political spectrum actually showed up and took selfies with the event, one of which was actually a Gary Johnson supporter but agrees with us and the cause that Hillary is not above the law.”
College Repubublicans at the University of Washington have been involved in several controversial demonstrations over the course of this election cycle, the most prominent of which was the construction of the “Trump Wall” in the middle of campus in early May (a demonstration that, in full disclosure, this author was involved with.)
There was some concern nationally that College Republicans would suffer backlash and a membership decline after the nomination of Donald Trump. The UW College Republicans have historically been one of the largest College Republicans chapters in Washington state, and have actually seen a great influx of membership since the nomination of Donald Trump, according to Gamble.
This event comes on the heels of the release of the latest LA Times/USC presidential tracking poll, which reports that Trump is leading among millennials- those aged 18 to 35- with 42.2% of the vote to Clinton’s 39.7%.
If Donald Trump is able to keep this margin up and win the youth vote, he would be the first Republican presidential candidate to win the youth vote since George H.W. Bush won the 18-29 demographic 53% to 47% in 1988.