College Caucus

The primaries are here, finally, and the chance to see which presidential hopeful has the most loyal supporters. What drew New York’s college Dems to their candidates? A look at the top Hillaristas and Obamaniacs at Columbia and NYU.

All photographs by Tim Murphy.

Founder, Columbia-Barnard Students for Hillary
What’s the Columbia Hillary group like?
It’s primarily Caucasian, like this campus, and 70-30 women to men.
Do you see yourself in Hillary?

She’s one of my heroes, hands down. She’s so hard-working.
Do you always say the correct thing, like she does?
I’m getting better at that. Before, I’d just leave the table. Now I can get passionate within the conversation and then get up and get you a coffee.

Co-president, Columbia Students for Obama
Why Obama?
Reading Dreams From My Father was inspiring.
Have you met him?
Yes, I told him I transferred to Columbia and he said, “I did the same thing.”
What are the Obama supporters like versus the Hillaryites?
We’re very cool and laid-back, our crew. Politics is important for us, but it’s fun.
Is this the hipster campaign?
I don’t think that’s the right word. But multicultural, absolutely.

Media coordinator, NYU Students for Obama
Are you and Obama alike?
We’re both biracial, black and white. Seeing someone from my background is incredibly inspiring.
How do Obama and Hillary supporters differ?
There’s a Hillary type. Not an Obama type.
What’s the Hillary type?
I’m just going to go with “cold.” There’s a level of insincerity.
What about that big, warm laugh?
The fact that you used that tone of voice is a testament to how fake it is.

Co-chair, NYU Law Students for Hillary
What clinched your support for Hillary?
She wasn’t known as a necessarily personable politician, then we see that spoof of The Sopranos. She injected humor.
Wasn’t that calculated to make her seem more fun?
I don’t care what her motivation was. It showed she’s responsive to the criticisms of her.
What Hillary qualities do you see in yourself?
The pragmatism. The essence of being a lawyer is being risk-averse.

Have good intel? Send tips to

College Caucus