Bloomington residents gathered at Nick’s English Hut Monday night to watch the results of the 2020 Iowa caucus, the first major contest in the 2020 presidential election.
The event, organized by Bloomington for Bernie Sanders, provided an opportunity for attendees to discuss the election. Bloomington resident, Jessica Martlage, who helped organize the event, said it was also a reward for all the hard work members of the organization have done in preparation for the upcoming election.
“We’ve hosted a lot of phone banks, made calls to Iowa to get people out to vote,” Martlage said. “Tonight we expect Bernie Sanders to get the victory in Iowa and set the tone for the rest of the election.”
Martlage said she hoped the evening would also allow attendees, and herself, to fully understand where other people were coming from regarding the issues at hand.
“I want to learn about their strugglesand what brings us together,” Martlage said. “Thinking about other people — and it may not affect you directly — but their struggle is your struggle, and we should all be able to lift each other up.”
Upstairs in the bar, attendees ate food and downed drinks while watching the results on TVs. During breaks in the coverage, lively discussion erupted between the patrons as people discussed political ideals and national issues.
Second year Maurer School of Law student Alex Busse said having a venue where everyone could come together in a casual way made the event interesting and entertaining.
“Everyone brings in niche interests, and it’s cool to see what other people are interested in, and I think it’s fun to diversify your portfolio of knowledge,” Busse said.
The event drew a diverse crowd of students, Bloomington residents and even a congressional candidate. D. Liam Dorris, who is running for the congressional seat of the 9th district of Indiana, said he was excited for the atmosphere the event would bring.
“I always welcome a good conversation,” Dorris said. “I try to keep it civil and interesting. A lot of good discussion could happen as we’re all informed voters here.”