I often find politics frustrating and don’t understand why neither side seems capable of any compromise, but one thing I do find cool is the atmosphere in D.C. during an election season. It’s treated like a sporting event.
For the debates and the election, you can find lists of area bars best for viewing and many offering election-themed specials. I caught the second presidential debate at a bar near Capitol Hill with some friends. We walked in a bit early and saw that the Yankees game was on. We checked with a bartender to see if there would be a TV showing the debate, and got a quick response that at debate time all the TVs would be switched over and the volume turned on. I don’t think there are too many cities where a debate trumps baseball playoffs!
On election night you can basically go to any bar in town to watch the returns come in. We ended up in Chinatown and watched with a packed crowd cheering or booing as results came in for or against their candidates. It was pretty entertaining, and regardless of how you feel about how the night’s results turned out, it is cool to see that level of interest in the direction our country is going.