Welcome to Policy Debate


Policy debate is a great way to discuss what actions we should take to solve problems. What should the government do about AIDS? How about crowded freeways? Relations with Russia? Ocean policies? The policy resolution chosen each year will allow you to develop strong research skills, learn about important public policies, and become a better communicator who can think quickly on your feet. People who did policy debate repeatedly state how it gave them a major edge in getting a job and in doing their jobs, not to mention that they had a lot of fun doing it.


Policy debate has two, two person teams debate against each other using a topic called a resolution. A resolution is a statement of support on an issue such as: Resolved: That the United States federal government should implement a comprehensive national health insurance plan. Each year, coaches throughout the country pick the topic that you debate.


One team, the affirmative, supports the topic. For example, for the above resolution, they might support a “single payer system” where every citizen in the United States is given a medical card and can use that card for free medical care. The affirmative might argue such a plan would provide health care for everyone thereby reducing illness and death.


The other team, the negative, argues against the affirmative. For example, they might argue that a single payer system. They might argue that such a system won’t improve health and will actually be too costly.