Washington and Lee students predict Bernie Sanders as Democratic presidential nominee at Mock Con 2020

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LEXINGTON, Va. (WFXR) — The students running the final session of the 2020 Mock Convention at Washington and Lee University on Saturday evening predicted that Sen. Bernie Sanders would be the Democratic candidate facing off against President Donald Trump in this year’s presidential election.

Washington and Lee’s “Mock Con” has been held every presidential election cycle for more than 100 years. This beloved tradition involves hundreds of students who devote thousands of hours to researching, number-crunching, and planning before finally unveiling a famously accurate prediction of the presidential candidate. In fact, the students who ran Mock Con 2016 correctly predicted Trump’s nomination as the Republican presidential candidate.

“Student involvement is the backbone. The backbone of the predictive process is the delegates who make up the 57-state delegations who provide research reports to our political team,” says Democratic Party analyst Luke Basham. “This is not just a quadrennial research project. It’s a moment which unites all W&L students. That’s our mission statement: unite to predict.”

Over the course of Friday, Feb. 14 and Saturday, Feb. 15, Mock Con broke up into four sessions, the first three featuring speeches from political icons such as Symone Sanders, former press secretary for Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign; former Sen. Joe Donnelly; former ACLU president Nadine Strossen; Patti Solis Doyle, chief of staff in Joe Biden’s 2008 campaign for vice president; Donna Brazile, former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee; Cameron Kasky, co-founder of March for our Lives; and Trevor Noah from “The Daily Show” to motivate the student body by sharing their views on American society.

In the words of Mock Con 2020’s political platform chair, Anna Renau, “It’s an educational experience where they can understand how our political process works so that when they get older — and, even today, it doesn’t have to wait until you get older to be really an active participant in our democracy and create a better nation for everyone, and that’s why we do this.”

The fourth and final session featured the Mock Con 2020 prediction that Sanders would be the Democratic presidential nominee.


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