Throw a Presidential Debate Party Without Burning Down the House

republicans democratsThe 2012 presidential debates are here! The presidential debates are here! Are you planning to watch? You could watch them alone and shout at your television in privacy. Hey, that's cool. Do it all the time myself. But isn't it even more fun if you have a few friends over? I think a debate party is in order.

We've given you ideas for Republican-themed food and drinks and a Democrat-themed menu. But let's amp up the fun even more with some ideas for games, themes, and more.


Invitations: You could try and invite people of all political persuasions. Um ... you are still speaking to your friends who are rooting for the other guy, right? Hmm.

More from The Stir: 2012 Presidential Debates: When They Start, Where to Watch

On second thought, maybe you should avoid having the police show up at your party to break up the inevitable "domestic disturbance." Just call the people you already know agree with each other. Apologize to your brother-in-law for un-viting him. He'll understand. He's un-viting you to his own party.

Seating charts: Assuming you do risk inviting people with different political views (ARE YOU REALLY SURE YOU WANT TO DO THAT?), you may need to create a little (ahem) space between certain hot-heads. Divide the sofa in half? Make one party sit on the floor and the other on the sofa (depending on the polls that day)? It's up to you.

Referee: Designate your most neutral friend as the referee to keep the peace. That is, if you still have a neutral friend. Otherwise, may I suggest: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Sarah Palin (I hear she's free), Bill Maher, Ann Coulter, Joe Scarborough, Kim Jong-un, or Elisabeth Hasselbeck.

Empty chair: If nothing else, do make sure you keep an empty chair up front in case anyone feels like giving an absent candidate a piece of their mind. It's cathartic and not at all weird.

Pre-debate meditation. Call it prayer, call it Lorazepam, whatever you need to keep yourself calm throughout the party, do it before anyone arrives.

Games: Okay, we know you take this all seriously. It's serious, folks! So serious. But you can still have some fun.

  • How about some buzzword bingo? Here's another debate bingo card from the GOP debates that might still work for this month's. And here's one from
  • Play that video of Jill Biden's speech and place bets on the length of Joe Biden's love wand based on her hand position. 
  • Health care reform charades: Act out your favorite injury or illness and then have everyone guess what would happen under Obamacare vs. when/if Obamacare is abolished. Bonus points if you can also guess what would happen under Romneycare (hint: probably the same thing).

Costumes: Invite everyone to dress up as their favorite notorious candidate, past or present. Then see if you can guess who's who. Extra points for tri-corner hats and pizza boxes. 

Time out for fashion: Who is the best-dressed candidate? Who looks the most presidential? Where would you put the brownface-o-meter for tonight, from "pasty" to "tandering." How about Obama's hair -- is he at an all-time recession gray? More importantly, who is the best-dressed possible FLOTUS? Play Guess the American designer. Whose outfit costs more? Extra points if Michelle Obama is wearing a sleeveless dress and Ann Romney's dress is red.

Let's move: Too much sitting and eating? Make everyone do push-ups and sprints during the commercial breaks. Slap hands if anyone reaches for seconds on dessert. Dessert? What's that even doing there? Where's the kale? Is any of this food even organic???

Organize a pre-debate marathon and see if you can beat Paul Ryan's time. What was it again ... three-hours-something? Or four? Eh, just guesstimate, give or take an hour.

Here are the 2012 President Debates schedule and details. A few more ways you can connect over the 2012 presidential debates: Moms Matter 2012 page, Moms Matter on Twittervideo coverage on YouTube.

Got any other great ideas for sharing the debates with friends? 


Image via DonkeyHotey/Flickr

Read More >