For Tommy Smart, Tuesday night's debate carried little weight because his candidate was not even in it.
Smart, freshman from Maryland, is a libertarian voting for former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson.
“I have a genuine hatred for Obama so I wanted Romney to win the debate,” he said, though he didn't think there was a clear winner in the end.
But he doubted even a Romney win on debate night would sway his vote on Election Day.
“I still couldn't vote for Romney,” he said. “To me, the difference between [him and Obama] wouldn't be very great.”
Smart and his peers, members of the group Hofstra Students for Liberty, spent the day in the student center dining hall explaining the policies of the Libertarian Party to students and fighting the two-party system.
Their views were relatively well-received by their peers, said freshman Brett Linley, who gave a speech outside the Hagedorn residence hall.
“I had a few people approach me afterward to ask me about some of the policies,” he said.
But the media -- which took every possible opportunity to interview students Tuesday -- wasn't as open minded, Smart said.
“I told Geraldo Rivera I was voting for Gary Johnson and he said, 'What's the point?' We're just passed off by the media.”
Libertarians Brett Linley and Tommy Smart at the presidential debate at Hofstra University. (Oct. 16, 2012)