How to Write a Negative Debate Speech

Bailey shoemaker richards.

Before writing a negative debate speech, research both sides of the topic and organize your argument.

In a debate, both sides write constructive speeches that cover the topic of the debate. Whatever the topic of the debate is, there will be a positive and negative side; this does not refer to the attitude of the speakers, but to the content of their position. The team or individual who takes the negative side of the speech will need to respond both to the topic of the debate and to the positive case. The negative debate must still build an explanatory case while taking the negative or "no" position.

Read the debate question. The question or topic of debate should be a yes or no or two-sided statement that can be researched and support both a positive and negative debate position.

Research the topic. Information should be found from reputable resources that present a fair analysis of the topic and allow you to form your own opinion based on the evidence presented. Use information that supports the negative side of the debate.

Begin organizing your opening speech. Most debates have two to three sections, with an opening speech and two rebuttals or question periods. Prepare an opening speech that introduces the negative position and provides 3 to 5 main points, each with supporting evidence.

Organize a rebuttal and prepare answers to questions. Outline and describe possible rebuttals to your points and develop responses to them. Be sure to back up all points with evidence.

Prepare questions for the positive team or individual. Find weaknesses in the positive position and prepare questions and evidence to ask for during the debate. Write 5 to 10 questions for the positive team.

About the Author

Bailey Shoemaker Richards is a writer from Ohio. She has contributed to numerous online and print publications, including "The North Central Review." Shoemaker Richards also edits for several independent literary journals and the Pink Fish Press publishing company. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from Ohio University.

Related Articles

How to Write a Constructive Speech

How to Write a Constructive Speech

Rules for Classroom Debates

Rules for Classroom Debates

How to Write a Debate Essay

How to Write a Debate Essay

Rules for How to Judge Debates

Rules for How to Judge Debates

How to Take Notes in a Debate Round

How to Take Notes in a Debate Round

How to Become a Good Debater

How to Become a Good Debater

How to Write an Argumentative Speech

How to Write an Argumentative Speech

How to Write a Rogerian Argument

How to Write a Rogerian Argument

Kinds of Debates

Kinds of Debates

How to Write a Discursive Essay

How to Write a Discursive Essay

How to Conduct a Debate in Fifth Grade

How to Conduct a Debate in Fifth Grade

How to Have a Classroom Debate in College

How to Have a Classroom Debate in College

How to Do a Debate Flow Chart

How to Do a Debate Flow Chart

How to Write a Pros & Cons Essay

How to Write a Pros & Cons Essay

Rules of Debate

Rules of Debate

The Difference Between Discursive & Argumentative Essays

The Difference Between Discursive & Argumentative Essays

How to Write a Persuasive Essay

How to Write a Persuasive Essay

How to Make an Opening Statement in a Debate

How to Make an Opening Statement in a Debate

Types of Debates

Types of Debates

How to Write an Analysis on an Editorial

How to Write an Analysis on an Editorial

Regardless of how old we are, we never stop learning. Classroom is the educational resource for people of all ages. Whether you’re studying times tables or applying to college, Classroom has the answers.

  • Accessibility
  • Terms of Use
  • Privacy Policy
  • Copyright Policy
  • Manage Preferences

© 2020 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Media, All Rights Reserved. Based on the Word Net lexical database for the English Language. See disclaimer .

Debate Writing

Debate Speech

Caleb S.

A Comprehensive Guide to Preparing and Delivering A Debate Speech

Published on: Mar 9, 2022

Last updated on: Jan 31, 2024

Debate Speech

People also read

20+ Thought Provoking Debate Examples: Including Tips

Interesting and Great Debate Topics (2024)

Learn All About Different Types of Debate - Complete Guide

10 Expert Debate Tips for Improving Your Debate Skills

Learn the Art of Debate Writing: Proven Techniques for Convincing Arguments

Share this article

Whether you are a student, a policymaker, or a business leader, the ability to debate effectively can be a game-changer. 

Debate speeches are important for anyone wanting to persuade others. However, writing and delivering a debate speech isn’t easy, especially if you are new to the process. 

This guide explains simple steps on how to write and deliver an excellent debate speech. It covers everything from preparing your arguments to delivering your speech with confidence and conviction.

So dive in to learn!   

On This Page On This Page -->

What is a Debate Speech?

A debate speech is a structured argument on a specific topic that is presented in a formal setting.  

The main purpose of debate speech is to:  

  • Express your point of view persuasively and effectively
  • Convince the opposition that you are right.
  • Change the people’s point of view on a particular topic.

In a debate speech, the speaker presents their argument in a clear, concise, and convincing manner. Debate speeches have a set time limit, and the speaker must use their time effectively to make their case and address counterarguments. 

Preparing for a Debate Speech 

You can only win your debate if you have spent time preparing it well. Follow the steps below to be prepared for your next debate speech.

Understanding the Debate Format 

It's essential to understand the format of the debate in which you want to participate. Different debate formats have specific rules and guidelines that you need to follow to succeed. 

Some popular types of debates include parliamentary, Lincoln-Douglas, and policy debates.

  • Parliamentary debate is a format where two teams of two or three members argue for or against a motion. It is presided over by a moderator. In this format, debaters have limited preparation time to gather information and construct their arguments.
  • Lincoln-Douglas debate is a one-on-one debate where debaters argue for their positions on a specific topic. This format usually involves a value system and a criterion that the debaters must uphold and defend.
  • Policy debate is a format where two teams of two members argue for or against a specific policy proposal. This format requires in-depth research and analysis of the policy and its potential implications.

Selecting a Position

Choose a topic that you are passionate about and that you feel strongly about. Once you have chosen a topic, narrow it down to a specific aspect that you can argue for or against. 

The clearer your position, the easier it will be to research and prepare your arguments.

Need some good debate topic ideas to get started? Check out our list of interesting and engaging debate topics to help you out!

Researching and Gathering Information

Once you have selected your topic, research it thoroughly. Gather as much information as you can from credible sources such as academic journals, news articles, and government reports. 

Take detailed notes, and make sure to record the sources you use so that you can reference them later.

Understanding Both Sides of the Argument 

To write a persuasive debate speech, it is important to understand both sides of the argument. 

Consider the arguments that your opponents might make and anticipate counterarguments. This will help you to strengthen your own arguments and address potential weaknesses in your position.

Organizing Your Arguments 

Once you have gathered all of the information you need, organize your arguments in a clear and logical way. 

Start by outlining the main points you want to make and then add supporting evidence to each point. Make sure that your arguments flow logically and build on each other.

Practicing Your Delivery

Finally, practice your delivery. Read your speech out loud several times to get a feel for how it flows. 

Time yourself to make sure that you can fit all of your arguments into the allotted time. Consider practicing in front of a friend or family member to get feedback on your delivery.

Paper due? Why Suffer? That's our job.

Paper due? Why Suffer? That's our job

How to Present a Debate Speech?

This type of speech requires some essential components. Here are the major components you need to present an effective debate speech. 

1. Catchy Introduction

The first important step is starting the debate with a compelling introduction. You can begin with a question, a quote, or a statistic related to the topic.

Moreover, your introduction should state your stance on the topic and provides a preview of your arguments. 

2. State the Problem & Define Key Terms

Define key terms in your speech that are important to your argument. This helps to ensure that your audience understands the meaning of the words you use.

3. Present Your Arguments

Present your arguments in a clear and logical order. Start with your strongest argument and provide evidence to support it. Then, move on to the weaker arguments and provide evidence for each one.

A good argument often follows the PEE structure, which means “Point, Evidence, Explanation (PEE)”.

  • Point or Reason: This is where you state your main idea or argument, providing a concise and clear statement of your position. The point should be specific, focused, and relevant to the topic at hand. It serves as the foundation for your argument
  • Evidence: Here, you provide supporting evidence to bolster your argument. This can take the form of examples, statistics, or any other relevant information that helps illustrate your point. 
  • Explanation: In this part, you elaborate on how the evidence you provided supports your point. This is where you explain the relationship between your point and the evidence, highlighting its significance

4. Rebuttals 

Address counterarguments by acknowledging the opposing viewpoints and refuting them with evidence. This is called a rebuttal. 

It shows that you have considered both sides of the argument and strengthens your own position. Addressing counterarguments through rebuttals is a vital aspect of constructing a well-rounded and persuasive argument. 

Rebuttals involve presenting evidence that challenges the opposing counter-arguments and weakens their validity. Additionally, it is crucial to explain the flaws or fallacies in the opposing arguments during the process of rebuttal.

5. Conclusion

End your speech with a strong conclusion that summarizes your arguments and restates your stance on the topic. You can also end with a call to action, encouraging your audience to take action based on your argument.

Tips for Presenting a Debate Speech Effectively

The above steps will help you prepare and present an acceptable speech, but you can improve it even more with the tips below.

  • Use Clear and Concise Language

Speak clearly and use language that is easy to understand. Avoid using jargon or complex words that might confuse your audience.

  • Emphasize Key Points

Highlight the key points of your argument by using vocal inflection and tone. Emphasize important words or phrases to help your audience remember your key arguments.

  • Use Body Language and Gestures

Body language and gestures can help to reinforce your arguments and make your speech more engaging. Use hand gestures to emphasize key points, and vary your posture and movement to keep your audience interested.

  • Maintain Eye Contact

Maintain eye contact with your audience throughout your speech. This will help to establish a connection with them and make them feel more engaged with your argument.

  • Use Vocal Variety and Tone

Vary your vocal tone and pace to add interest and emphasis to your speech. Use pauses and changes in pace to emphasize important points, and vary your volume to make your arguments more impactful.

  • Use the Debate Speech Checklist

Here is a checklist that can help you evaluate your debate.

  • Does your speech cover your opinion about the topic?
  • Does your speech start with a catchy hook?
  • Does your speech cover all the main points?
  • Does your speech provide sufficient counterarguments?
  • Does your speech contain enough evidence?
  • Does your speech provide a call to action to the conclusion?

Debate Speech Examples 

Here are some examples to help you prepare and present your debate speech better. 

Debate Speech Structure

Debate Speech Template

Debate Speech Sample

Writing and delivering a successful debate speech requires careful planning, research, and effective communication skills. 

By following the steps and tips provided above, you can persuade your audience effectively and make a lasting impact. Remember to practice, rehearse, and be confident in your abilities. 

Still need expert help in writing your speech? We’ve got you covered! is here to assist you. We are an expert speech writing service with a team of experienced professionals. 

Our AI essay writing tools can help you at every step of the speech-writing process, from selecting a topic to gathering evidence.

We provide customized, high-quality writing services at an affordable price. You can also take advantage from our AI essay writer tool to improve your writing skills.

So why wait? Contact our professional essay writing service and impress your audience with an amazing speech!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 4 types of debate.

The four main types of debate are: 

  • Parliamentary Debate 
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate 
  • Cross-Examination Debate 
  • Academic Debate 

What are the 2 sides of a debate called?

The opposition and proposition are the two sides of a debate. 

Caleb S. (Literature, Marketing)

Caleb S. has extensive experience in writing and holds a Masters from Oxford University. He takes great satisfaction in helping students exceed their academic goals. Caleb always puts the needs of his clients first and is dedicated to providing quality service.

Paper Due? Why Suffer? That’s our Job!

Get Help

Keep reading

Debate Speech

Legal & Policies

  • Privacy Policy
  • Cookies Policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Refunds & Cancellations
  • Our Writers
  • Success Stories
  • Our Guarantees
  • Affiliate Program
  • Referral Program
  • AI Essay Writer

Disclaimer: All client orders are completed by our team of highly qualified human writers. The essays and papers provided by us are not to be used for submission but rather as learning models only.

how to write a negative debate speech


Improve your practice.

Enhance your soft skills with a range of award-winning courses.

Complete Guide to Debating: How to Improve your Debating Skills

August 1, 2018 - Gini Beqiri

Debating can look intimidating from the sidelines, with speakers appearing confident, passionate and unwavering, but it consists of skills that anybody can learn. Debating may not be something that you encounter in your everyday work but these skills can be incredibly valuable. In this article we provide a guide to the basics of debating.

What is debating?

A debate is a structured contest over an issue or policy. There are two sides – one supporting, one opposing.

Benefits of debating include:

  • Allowing you to think about aspects and perspectives you may not have considered.
  • Encourages you to speak strategically.
  • Improving  public speaking skills .
  • Learning how to create a persuasive argument.
  • When you have to argue against your personal view you realise that there are two sides to the argument.

Debating examples

The U.K. Prime Minister, Theresa May, answers questions:

This example video shows Theresa May answering questions from MPs in the House of Commons. Notice her strong debating skills and how she answers difficult questions under pressure.

Watch the full video here:  Prime Minister’s Questions: 16 May 2018

Debate structure

There are multiple formats a debate can follow, this is a basic debate structure:

  • A topic is chosen for each debate – this is called a resolution or motion. It can be a statement, policy or idea. The motion is usually a policy which changes the current state of affairs or a statement which is either truth or false. The motion typically starts with “This House…”
  • The Affirmative team support the statement
  • The Negative team oppose the statement
  • Sometimes you will be asked to take a position in the debate but in other debates you will be allocated your position.
  • Teams are provided with time to prepare – usually one hour
  • Each speaker presents for a set amount of time
  • Speakers alternate between the teams, usually a speaker in the Affirmative team starts, followed by a Negative speaker, then the second Affirmative speaker presents, followed by the second Negative speaker etc.
  • The debate is then judged.
  • There may be an audience present but they are not involved in the debate

Once you have learned how to debate in one format you can easily switch to another.

Roles of the speakers

Each speaker must typically do the following:

First Affirmative

  • Contextualise the debate – clearly set out your team’s interpretation of the topic and the significant issues they disagree with.
  • Provide definitions if necessary.
  • Outline the team line and the team split – this is where you outline your team’s case and summarise the way your arguments have been divided between your speakers.
  • Provide 2-3 arguments supporting the motion.

First Negative

  • Clearly state your definition
  • Provide your arguments as to why this is the superior definition
  • Rebut the Affirmative’s arguments supporting their definition
  • Outline a team line and team split.
  • Rebut the arguments made by the First Affirmative.
  • Deliver 2-3 arguments against the motion.

Second Affirmative

  • If needed, resolve any definitional issues.
  • Rebut the First Negative’s arguments.
  • Deliver 2-3 arguments supporting the motion.

Second Negative

  • Rebut the arguments made by the Affirmative team up to this point, with a focus on the Second Affirmative’s arguments.

Third Affirmative

  • Rebut specific issues raised by Second Negative and defend any other important attacks on your team’s case.
  • Conclude your speech with a brief summary (1-2 minutes) of your team’s case. You should include the key issues which you and the Negative team disagreed on during this.
  • You can introduce new material but this is interpreted as poor team planning.

Third Negative

  • This is the same structure as the Third Affirmative.

There are many variations of the three against three debate, a commonly known one is Points of Information. This is used a lot in  university debates . During a speech the opposition is allowed to ask a question or make a point.

They stand up and say “point of information” or “on that point” etc. The speaker can choose to accept or reject the point. If accepted, the point of information can last around 15 seconds and the speaker can ask for it to stop at any time.

Debate definitions

Younger debaters tend to waste time defining terms so you must first decide whether you need to define a term. Ask yourself: will my speech be confusing if I don’t define this term? Could the opposition misinterpret what I mean without a definition? For example, the motion could be “we should ban plastic straws”. It’s clear what “plastic straws” are but what does “ban” mean?

Two factors which determine the definition of the debate:

1. Context  – what is happening in the area that relates to this issue? For example, maybe the government of a country is debating banning smoking in public buildings and you decide to define the term “passive smoking” during the debate. If a significant event related to the topic has occurred then it should be the focus of the debate, for instance, a shocking report may have recently been revealed in the media showing the widespread effects of second-hand smoking.

2. Spirit of the motion  – topics are chosen for a reason so what sort of debate was imagined when the topic was chosen? Looking at the spirit of the motion will ensure that you pick a definition that will produce a well-balanced and important debate.

If the topic is vague then you will have more choice of definitions. You have a duty to pick a clear definition and one that will create a good debate. If not, this may cause a definitional challenge which will ruin the debate and frustrate the judges.

For example, the topic may be “we spend too much money on the stars”. Stars can refer to celebrities or astronomy so you need to choose a definition.

  • Look at the context and see if there has been a recent significant event related to either topics – the media is the best place to look.
  • Then apply second test – which definition will lead to the best debate, which will be more interesting and debatable?

If one answer passes both tests then that’s your definition. If they tie then either is a good definition.

When providing your definition explain the context used to form the definition. This is important because your understanding of the context may be different from others due to various factors, such as, religion, culture, gender etc.

Learn more about using  AI to practice your debating skills .

Basic argument structure

There are various ways of dividing up cases according to groups of arguments, such as, social/economic/political etc. You could assign each speaker to handle a group.

Place the most important arguments first, for example, “The media has more influence on self-esteem than anybody else. This is true for three reasons. Firstly (most important argument)… Secondly…, Thirdly (least important argument)…”

To structure an argument follow these steps:

  • Claim  – present your argument in a clear statement. This claim is one reason why you’re in favour of/against the motion.
  • Evidence  – the evidence supporting your claim, such as, statistics, references, quotes, analogies etc.
  • Impact  – explain the significance of the evidence – how does this support your claim?

Arguments are weakest at the evidence stage as it’s easy to argue against, for example, the evidence may consist of isolated examples or there may be counter evidence. But it’s not a good technique because the opposition can provide more evidence or rebut your criticisms.

It’s difficult to rebut claims because they are usually reasonable but if you can attack a claim then that speaker’s whole argument falls apart. So if you think a claim is vulnerable then rebut it but you will need a strong explanation to show why it doesn’t matter.

European human rights debating

European  human rights debating  for sixth form students from across London.

There are common flaws you can look for to form a rebuttal:

1. False dichotomy  – this is where the speaker is trying to falsely divide the debate into two sides even though there are more alternatives than they state. It’s likely the speaker is doing this on purpose but in some cases they do not understand the debate.

2. Assertion  – this is when a speaker presents a statement which isn’t actually an argument because there is no reason to believe that the statement is valid. It may just be an assumption. You can point out that there has not been enough examination to prove this validity and then give a reason why the assertion is (probably) not valid.

3. Morally flawed  – arguments can be morally flawed, for example, “All criminals given a prison sentence should be given the death penalty instead, this will save the country money and space.” What has been argued is true but it’s clearly morally flawed.

4. Correlation rather than causation  – a speaker may suggest a link between two events and suggest one led to the other. But the speaker may not explain how one caused the other event which can make an argument invalid.

5. Failure to deliver promises  – sometimes a speaker might fail to complete a task they promised to deliver. For instance, they may state that they will provide evidence supporting a certain claim but they may lose track of what they have said and not actually do this.

6. Straw man  – the opposing team introduces an argument and then rebuts it. They may use an extreme example of your proposal or perhaps they were hoping that you would make this argument.

7. Contradiction  – an argument the other team presents may contradict one of their previous arguments. You must point out that the arguments cannot be true simultaneously and then explain how this reduces their case’s credibility.

8. Compare the conclusion to reality  – think “what would happen if what they (the other team) are suggesting is implemented right now?” This usually shows that it’s more complicated than they have suggested and the changes can cause secondary problems.

Course promotion image

Judges generally score the speakers looking at this criteria:

  • Content / Matter  – What the debaters say, their arguments and evidence, the relevance of their arguments.
  • Style / Manner  – How the debaters speak, including the language and tone used.
  • Strategy / Method  – The structure of the speech, the clarity and responding to other’s arguments.

Debating event at the Oxford Union

Debating event at  the Oxford Union

Important skills for debating

To meet the judges criteria you will have to develop certain skills, consider the following:

  • You points must be relevant to the topic.
  • Provide evidence whenever you can and not your personal opinion.
  • You must put aside your personal views and remain objective when you debate so your argument remains logical. You can be passionate about a topic but interest can turn into aggression and passion can turn into upset.
  • Consider the audience’s attention span – make it interesting, for example, don’t just present lots of complicated statistics.
  • Ethos – the ethical appeal
  • Pathos – the emotional appeal
  • Logos – the logical appeal
  • Use notes but keep them brief and well organised. Use a different piece of paper for rebuttals.
  • Similar to looking at conclusions to create rebuttals, think comparatively by asking yourself “How does my plan compare to what’s happening now/what would happen in the world if the other team won?” You can win the debate if you can make comparative claims about why your arguments matter more than the other team.
  • Only tell jokes if you’re naturally good at it otherwise this can backfire.
  • Flexibility is important because you might get allocated the side of the argument you don’t agree with. You’ll have to work hard to overcome your views. Also use this insight to think of the potential arguments you might make and then plan for counter arguments.
  • Speak clearly and concisely.
  • You must talk fast enough to have the time to deliver your speech but slow enough so you can be understood.
  • Project your voice to the back of the room.
  • Incorporate dramatic pauses.
  • Emphasise important words and vary your tone appropriately.
  • Have a relaxed pose and posture.
  • Avoid filler words.
  • Know your material.
  • Emphasise using gestures and avoid nervous gestures.
  • Maintain eye contact with the audience.
  • Keep your language simple to avoid confusion.
  • Refer to the opposite side as: “My opponent”.
  • When making a rebuttal say: “My opponent said…, however…”
  • Don’t exaggerate – avoid the words “never” or “always” etc.
  • Avoid saying that a speaker “is wrong”, instead say that “your idea is mistaken”.

What to avoid

  • Falsifying, making up or altering evidence.
  • Publicly disagreeing with the judges’ decision.
  • Attacking a speaker rather than an idea.
  • Acting aggressively or offensively towards debaters, judges, audience etc.
  • Interrupting other debaters as this can suggest that your argument isn’t very strong.
  • Disagreeing with facts or obvious truths.

British Parliamentary debating

British Parliamentary debating  is a popular form of debating so we will briefly explain it: There are four teams made up of two speakers each. Two teams are on the government’s side and the other two teams are the opposition but all the teams are trying to win rather than one side. The motion is given 15 minutes before the debate begins and teams are assigned to positions randomly. They alternate their speeches, with the government’s side starting. Speeches are usually 5-7 minutes.

The first two speakers on the government side are called the “opening government” and the first two speakers on the opposition’s side are called the “opening opposition”. The last two speakers on the government’s and opposition’s side are called the “closing government” and “closing opposition” correspondingly.

British MPs debate a petition seeking to ban Donald Trump from entering the U.K.

The speakers’ roles in the opening half of the debate are similar to the roles of the first and second speakers in the three against three debate described previously. The only difference is that the second opening government and second opening opposition speakers include summaries at the end of their speeches – this is because they will also be competing with the teams in the closing half of the debate.

The closing government and closing opposition aim to move the debate on but not contradict their side’s opening team. As well as rebuttal, the majority of the third speaker’s time consists of presenting either: new material, new arguments, a new analysis from a different perspective or extending previously presented arguments. This is called an “extension” which must be something that sets their team apart and makes them unique.

The last two speeches of the closing teams are summary speeches – they summarise the debate and disagreements between the team. Their most important goal is to explain why their side has won the debate. They are not allowed to present new arguments but they can present new evidence and rebuttal.

During the speeches points of information are offered regularly. Speakers should only accept a maximum of two points of information. The first and last minute is protected time where points of information cannot be offered.

Rather than a side trying to win, all the teams are trying to win – this allows different perspectives to be explored. The teams are then ranked 1st to 4th in the debate.

Debate topics

Almost anything can be debated, here are some popular topics – these have been written as questions but they can be easily adapted into statements:

  • Is animal experimentation justified?
  • Should we legalise the possession of cannabis for medicinal use?
  • Should we recognise Bitcoin as a legal currency?
  • Is torture acceptable when used for national security?
  • Should mobile phones be banned until a certain age?
  • Does technology make us more lonely?
  • Should guns be banned in the U.S.?
  • Should we make internet companies liable for illegal content shared on their platforms?
  • Will posting students’ grades publicly motivate them to perform better?
  • Should animals be used for scientific testing?
  • Do violent video games make people more violent?
  • Should the death penalty be stopped completely?
  • Should smoking in public places be completely banned?
  • Should doping be allowed in professional sports?
  • Should all zoos be closed?
  • Should consumers must take responsibility for the plastic waste crisis?
  • Is euthanasia justified?
  • Is the boarding school system beneficial to children?

Debate topics for children

If you’re trying to think of debate topics for a classroom, consider the following:

  • Should mobile phones be allowed at school?
  • Is global warming a problem?
  • Should violent video games be banned?
  • Is school detention beneficial?
  • Are celebrities good role models?
  • Does social networking have a beneficial effect on society?
  • Are single sex schools more effective than co-ed schools?
  • Do celebrities get away with more crime than non-celebrities?
  • Is cloning animals ethical?
  • Are humans to blame for certain animal extinctions?

Debating societies

If you’re interested in debating consider searching for a society or debating events near you:

  • Most universities have a debating society and their webpages usually contain lots of useful information and tips.
  • Toastmasters
  • Use Meetup to find debates close to you

Specific to the UK:

  • Sylvans Debating Club
  • The Association of Speakers Clubs
  • Sign up For Free

LD and PF Club Team registration for the 2022-2023 debate season is now open!

  • Join Our Newsletter

E:  [email protected]

  • Schedule a Private Call

The DebateDrills logo

101: Introduction to LD

What is Lincoln-Douglas (LD)

How to win a LD Debate Round

How to Judge a LD Debate Round

LD Speech Format

First Affirmative Constructive (1AC)

Cross Examinations

First Negative Constructive (1NC)

First Affirmative Rebuttal (1AR)

Second Negative Rebuttal (2NR)

Second Affirmative Rebuttal (2AR)

102: Beyond the Basics

Constructing a Case

Framework vs. Contentions

Mastering the Constructives

Mastering the Rebuttals

Final Speeches

Following the Neg’s cross-examination, the Neg gives their First Negative Constructive (also known as the “NC” or “1NC.” The speech is 7 minutes. Here’s the Neg has two jobs – presenting their own case and answering the Aff’s case. For their own case, in a traditional round the Neg will present their own Framework and their own Contention(s) before moving onto the Aff’s case. In a more “circuit” round, however, the Neg might read multiple “off-case” positions, such as Kritiks, Counterplans, Disads, and Procedurals. They are then reading multiple cases, in essence. In dealing with the Aff’s case, the Neg will want to have a combination of offense and defense, seeking to defeat the Aff’s contentions. They also might contest the Aff’s Framework, if the two teams have read different Framework arguments.

First, it should have multiple offensive outs . Too many debaters load up the 1NC with tons of counterplans or defensive answers to the case while only reading one disad or one other offensive path to the ballot. This makes the 1AR far too easy, since the 1AR can focus its firepower on the one core 2NR option. Second, eliminate the throwaway arguments . In the interest of making a 1NC “bigger,” many debaters will include extraneous, silly arguments that they cannot realistically go for. This is unstrategic, since a good 1AR will choose to just blow off those arguments. Third and closely related, arguments need to be fully developed . LD is not like Policy with a 2NC/1NR to develop offense. The 1NC is the Neg’s one and only constructive; an under-developed argument in the 1NC cannot really be developed new in the 2NR without running the risk of it being a brand-new argument. Fourth, the Neg should be careful to allocate time appropriately between case arguments and offcase arguments. Case arguments attack your opponent’s case, while offcase arguments develop your own positions (Kritiks, Counterplans, Disads, Procedurals, Negative Case, etc.). Too many debaters spend insufficient time dealing with the Aff case, which poses risks: the Aff can quickly extend their case and use dropped arguments to implicate Neg positions. It’s important to balance the time appropriately to have developed offcase arguments and also case arguments. Fifth, be careful with card highlighting. Once again, this is a balance. Some debaters go overboard and highlight cards (highlighting entire blocks of text) and include extraneous text that is not necessary. This severely crimps the ability for the 1NC to make many arguments, because each card is excessively long as a result. However, some debaters go too far in the opposite direction and end up highlighting sentence fragments/unwarranted cards that make the cards completely worthless. A general rule of thumb is that a card should be 3-4 warranted sentences. A well-highlighted 1NC is included here .

Debate Writing

Cathy A.

Debate Writing - A Comprehensive Writing Guide

14 min read

debate writing

People also read

Interesting Debate Topics and Ideas for Students

Debate Speech - Ultimate Writing Guide for Students

Types of Debate - A Complete Overview & Examples

Free Debate Examples for All Academic Levels

Best Debate Tips for Students

Advanced Debating Techniques for Students

Have you ever found yourself at a loss for words when it comes to articulating your thoughts in a debate?

The inability to formulate your thoughts in a debate can be a significant obstacle, hindering your ability to express yourself effectively. But don’t worry!

If you’re someone who’s wandering around trying to find the secrets to craft an outstanding debate speech, we’ve got your back.

In this blog, we’ll introduce you to debate writing, types, format, some tips, and debate examples, so you can understand how to pen down the perfect debate.

Let’s get going!

Arrow Down

  • 1. What is Debate Writing?
  • 2. Types of Debate
  • 3. Debate Writing Format
  • 4. How to Write a Debate?
  • 5. How to End the Debate?
  • 6. Debate Writing Tips and Tricks
  • 7. Advanced Techniques for Debate Writing 
  • 8. Debate Writing Examples
  • 9. Debate Writing Topics for Students 

What is Debate Writing?

A debate is a formal contest of argumentation where two opposing teams defend and attack a given resolution. Similarly, it is also a persuasive manner of speaking to convert one’s opinion into your viewpoint.

Here, the speaker either speaks for or against a particular topic being discussed. Moreover, it is the process of preparing and writing the debate before its formal presentation.

Features of Debate Writing

The following are the main features of debate writing.

  • Informative -  A good debate must provide complete information and facts. It is supposed to inform and educate people with the help of logical reasoning.
  • Well-reasoned - The arguments discussed in a debate must be logical, relevant, competent, and well-explained.
  • Persuasive -  A debate must emphasize strong arguments to convince the people.
  • Orderly -  A debate must present the facts in a structured and organized form. It should also follow a specific format.
  • Dynamic -  In a debate, two teams present opposing arguments. Similarly, all the important points must be questioned and answered by each team member.

Types of Debate

The following is a detailed description of common debating types that are practiced on various occasions. 

  • Team Policy Debate -  It consists of two teams, each with two debaters. The main aim is to present a huge amount of data coherently.
  • Cross-examination Debate -  It is considered a period between speeches. Here, the opponents ask each other to clarify and understand the points based on evidence.
  • Lincoln-Douglas Debate - It is a one-on-one and an open-style debate. Here, the debaters focus on arguing for or against a topic persuasively and logically.
  • Spontaneous Argumentation - Includes two teams that argue on a specific idea, but it does not require much research work. Similarly, this debate focuses more on presentation than content.
  • Public Forum Debate -  It includes arguments on controversial topics. Moreover, these are used to test the argumentation, cross-examination, and refutation skills of the debaters.
  • Parliamentary Debate - It consists of two teams, one called the government and the other called the opposition team. The Government team proposes a motion, and the Opposition team argues against it.

If you want to learn more about the different debating types, head to over comprehensive blog on types of debates.

Debate Writing Format

The debate writing for middle or high school follows the same format structure. Here, we have mentioned a detailed format for you to get an idea of the parts of a debate.

Check out the given debate writing template to get help with structuring your debate.

Debate Writing Template

Order Essay

Paper Due? Why Suffer? That's our Job!

How to Start a Debate?

When starting the debate writing process, the question “ How to write a debate introduction?… ” could come off as a daunting one, but don’t worry.

Here are some easy steps for you to write a compelling debate introduction.

speech examples

1. Impressive greeting and strong opening sentence:

Greet your audience with enthusiasm, capturing their attention with a compelling opening statement that sets the tone for your debate.

2. Tell a personal story:

Connect emotionally by sharing a relevant personal anecdote that humanizes the topic, making it relatable and engaging.

3. State an amazing Fact:

Introduce a surprising or impressive fact related to your debate topic to pique interest and establish credibility.

4. Use a powerful quotation:

Incorporate a thought-provoking quote that aligns with your argument, adding depth and authority to your speech.

5. Ask a rhetorical question:

Pose a rhetorical question to stimulate critical thinking among your audience, encouraging them to ponder the issue at hand.

6. State a problem:

Clearly articulate the problem or challenge associated with your debate topic, highlighting its significance and relevance.

7. Share your opinion about the topic:

Express your stance on the matter, providing a concise preview of your argument and setting the stage for the forthcoming points in your debate speech.

How to Write a Debate?

Following are the steps you can stick to for writing a debate speech that lets you stand out from the competition:  

1. Understand the Debate

The first of many steps in debate writing is understanding its nature. Here, both teams will be given a topic, and they will choose an affirmative or negative stance.

2. Research the Topic Thoroughly

Brainstorm and research the topic thoroughly to understand all the aspects of the debate. Make a list of critical points and use credible sources to cover them in your key arguments.

3. Develop a Debate Outline

Develop a basic debate speech outline that consists of three main sections. It includes an introduction, body, and conclusion that are discussed below in detail.

It is the first section of the outline that includes an attention grabber. Introduce your topic and present the context with the help of a  thesis statement . Also, provide a brief overview of the students’ arguments to understand the direction of the debate.

It is the main section of the debate that discusses the key arguments in detail. Moreover, it further includes logical reasoning and evidence to support the thesis.

The conclusion is the last chance to demonstrate significant ideas. It summarizes the main body by adding emotion and drama to the words and includes a strong closing sentence.

4. Writing the Debate

Start writing the final draft of your debate. Mention the crucial elements of persuasion, which are ethos, pathos, and logos. These are used to explain the effects of the resolution in the real world.

Also, use transition words to maintain a logical flow between paragraphs. Lastly, edit and proofread your work to avoid plagiarism, grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors.

Here is a great example of a well-written debate introduction:

If you’re thinking, “ How to write a debate greeting? ”, take a thorough look at the detailed steps below: 

If you have the question, “ How to write a debate against the motion? ” in mind, look at this step-by-step procedure below:

Tough Essay Due? Hire Tough Writers!

How to End the Debate?

End the debate by making sure that you have included the following elements. It will help you assess the credibility of your debate.

  • Does your debate start with an interesting greeting?
  • Does it provide original content, personal experience, and a call to action?
  • Does the debate follow a proper format structure?
  • Does it include the correct sentence structure?
  • Does it maintain logical transitions to flow ideas from one paragraph to another?
  • Have you proofread or revised it for common mistakes such as spelling, grammar, and punctuation?
  • Does the debate mention your opinion about the given topic?
  • Does the debate end with a powerful conclusion sentence to leave a lasting impact on the audience?

Debate Writing Tips and Tricks

Here are some amazing debate tips and tricks for you to write a perfect debate:

  • It is better to know and prepare for a debate before starting it
  • Conduct thorough research work to collect relevant data and draft creative arguments about the topic
  • A writer should think relatively to identify the validity of significant claims
  • Try to understand the formal debate through a variety of personal experiences
  • Support the arguments with examples and evidence to make them more credible and authentic
  • Also, consider the perspective of the judges and audience while making a critical argument
  • Always structure your speech while keeping the time limits in mind
  • Do not always disagree with the opponent’s arguments. Instead, you should take notes and think logically
  • Build your case by keeping in mind all the possible objections that others can raise
  • Never make the mistake of introducing new arguments in your closing section

Advanced Techniques for Debate Writing 

Below are some easy  debating techniques  to write a primary and high school debate.

  • Introduce the topic at the beginning of the debate and form an opinion about it.
  • Know your audience to adjust your argument according to them.
  • Assign the two sides as affirmatives and negatives.
  • Take enough time to research the case and the vocabulary used for it.
  • Organize your opinion and present supporting facts to persuade the audience.
  • Follow a basic debate structure that includes the following period.
  • Get an idea about the opponent’s arguments and advance your research by weakening them.
  • Make a judgment based on the audience’s votes and your opinion about the arguments.
  • Connect to the audience emotionally by presenting examples, evidence, and personal experiences.
  • Incorporate simple, well-timed humor to engage and emphasize your argument effectively

Debate Writing Examples

Check out the following examples of debate writing to get a better idea of the concept.

Debate Example for Ks2

Debate Writing Class 6

Debate Writing Class 7

Debate Writing Class 8

Debate Writing Class 9

Debate Writing Class 11 PDF

Debate Writing Class 12

Debate Writing Example on Online Classes

If you want inspiration from more examples on various debate topics, visit our comprehensive debate examples blog!

Debate Writing Topics for Students 

The following are some impressive debate writing prompts for students to get started.

  • All schools should conduct compulsory drug testing on their students
  • Middle and high schools must ban sex education
  • Is it ethical to move in before getting married?
  • Academic institutes should ban smoking on college premises
  • Peer pressure is harmful to students
  • High schools should provide daycare services to students who have children
  • The government should develop nuclear energy for commercial use
  • Celebrities can get away with crime more easily than non-celebrities
  • Cell phones should not be used in classrooms
  • Money motivates people more than any other factor in the workplace

Head over to our list of debate topics to choose from a wide range of unique debate writing ideas.

To sum it up,  This comprehensive guide to debate writing will help you write a perfect one for your high school or college. We’ve covered all the essential details one would need to craft a winning debate.

However, if you think that you could use a helping hand to perfect your debate writing game, we’ve got you covered. 

You can get help from our speech writing service to solve your debate writing worries. Our writing experts will deliver you comprehensive and well-composed debates at rates that won’t break the bank. 

Simply reach out to our reliable essay writing service , and we’ll take care of all your writing-related problems. 

AI Essay Bot

Write Essay Within 60 Seconds!

Cathy A.

Cathy has been been working as an author on our platform for over five years now. She has a Masters degree in mass communication and is well-versed in the art of writing. Cathy is a professional who takes her work seriously and is widely appreciated by clients for her excellent writing skills.

Get Help

Paper Due? Why Suffer? That’s our Job!

Keep reading

debate topics

The Classroom | Empowering Students in Their College Journey

How to Create a Debate Speech

How to Write a Definition Speech

How to Write a Definition Speech

A debate is a formal, friendly competition between two people or two teams that take opposing sides on an issue -- a proposition side that is in favor of adopting a resolution and an opposition side that refutes the resolution. To craft a debate speech that grabs and holds the attention of the judges and audience, set the tone by using simple words precisely and accurately. Inaccurate word choice opens you up to attack from your opponents. Do not use casual, rude or offensive language.

Open the Debate

Introduce the topic in the first paragraph then make a statement that clearly and specifically identifies the team's position -- in favor or against the motion or issue under debate. Define and explain any complex scientific or technological terms or processes your audience needs to understand the topic before stating if you are for or against the resolution . For instance, if the debate is about a resolution to ban a specific environmental hazard such as shale oil drilling, explain the process of drilling through rock -- hydraulic fracturing known as fracking -- with a high-pressure mixture of chemicals and water to release resources of oil and gas

Present the Context

Explain the context -- the related circumstances and events in real life that relate to the topic. For example, if your team is against fracking, offer examples and statistics about groundwater contamination and earthquake events over time that scientists believe are related to shale drilling. The opposition could show how fracking decreases the country’s dependence on foreign energy products and helps stabilize the economy. To capture the emotional impact of the topic, tell an anecdote about someone who has personal experience with the topic or use a short famous quote, proverb, saying or poem and explain how it relates to the topic.

Provide an Overview

Make an attack that goes beyond a mere rebuttal of a particular point with an overview of the debate so far. The idea is to evaluate the arguments made by the opposing team and to point out any flaws in the general approach. For the fracking issue, you could point out that arguments about an environmental phenomenon should not be based primarily on an economic or foreign policy issues. The opposition could question the scientific evidence against fracking procedures or point out that the argument so far ignores some important factors such as the opportunity fracking offers to generate electricity at half the CO2 emissions of coal.

Direct Audience Attention

Insert transition markers to keep the arguments in the middle of the speech from merging with each other. For example, instead of just saying “furthermore,” refer specifically to each point as either first, second or third point. For instance, you could say: “Now let us look at why the opposition’s first point concerning environmental contamination is flawed.” Use a signpost such as “For my first rebuttal, allow me to address the opposition’s second point about dependence on foreign oil.” Eliminate “deadwood” such as “as you may know, as I mentioned before, in the final analysis,” or "Ladies and Gentlemen." A short pause is more effective to help keep the audience’s attention.

Conclude with a Theme

Sum up the key points you have presented and if time permits what the other speakers have presented. Refer back to the introduction’s anecdote or use a quote that vividly conveys the theme of argument such as what attitudes toward fracking have to say about a future of economic stability or environmental devastation. Debate speeches often end with a flourish -- a showy, emotional or dramatic tone that conveys intensity of feeling.

Related Articles

What Is a Bridge Statement in English Homework?

What Is a Bridge Statement in English Homework?

How to Write Research Papers From Start to Finish

How to Write Research Papers From Start to Finish

How to Write a Rhetoric Speech

How to Write a Rhetoric Speech

How to Write a Speech Running for City Council

How to Write a Speech Running for City Council

How to Improve Debating Skills

How to Improve Debating Skills

What Are Two Types of Research Papers?

What Are Two Types of Research Papers?

How to End a Debate

How to End a Debate

How to write a rebuttal speech.

A native of New Orleans, Amanda Petrona holds a Bachelor of Science in anthropology/social psychology and Master of Arts in English. She taught writing, research and literature at LSU Baton Rouge. Petrona founded Wild Spirit Louisiana, an organic farm, nature conservatory, and education center for sustainable and holistic living.

Literacy Ideas

How to Write a Winning Debate Speech

' data-src=

What is a Debate?

A classroom debate involves students delivering persuasive speeches to present and support their opinions on a given subject. This activity helps develop critical thinking and communication skills, enabling students to gain a more comprehensive grasp of various topics.

Debate speeches are written according to a set of rules so a moderator can assess their effectiveness and allow others to question or challenge their statements within a formal debate.

A classroom debate is not an unruly fight or pointless argument but a structured formal conversation on a chosen topic in which two teams argue for or against it to convince the neutral moderator that they hold the stronger position.

Debating is a form of persuasive communication, and while we will be sticking to the fundamentals of how to write a debating speech, we also have a great guide to persuasive essay writing that elaborates on specific persuasive techniques.

Complete Teaching Unit on Class Debating

debate speech,debating | class debating unit 1 | How to Write a Winning Debate Speech |

This unit will guide your students to write excellent DEBATE SPEECHES and craft well-researched, constructed ARGU MENTS ready for critique from their classmates.

Furthermore, this EDITABLE UNIT will provide the TOOLS and STRATEGIES for running highly engaging CLASSROOM DEBATES.

How To Run A Classroom Debate

Before jumping in headfirst to write your debating speech, ensure you understand how a debate is run to maximise your strategy and impact when it counts.

Debates occur in many different contexts, such as public meetings, election campaigns, legislative assemblies, and as entertainment on television shows. These contexts determine the specific structure the debate will follow.

This guide provides a basic step-by-step debate structure we can comfortably run with students in a classroom. By familiarizing students with this structure, they will effortlessly transition to other debate frameworks.

Running a classroom debate can be an engaging and educational activity that helps students develop critical thinking, communication, and research skills. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to organize and facilitate a successful classroom debate:

1. Choose a Topic For Your Debate.

Also called a resolution or a motion , the topic is sometimes chosen to debate. This is usually the case in a school activity to practice debating skills. 

The resolution or motion is usually centered around a true or false statement or a proposal to change the current situation. Often, the motion starts, ”This House believes that….”

Select a topic relevant to your curriculum and the students’ interests. Ensure that it is debatable and has multiple perspectives. Further down this article, you can find a list of popular classroom debating topics.

2. Form Two Debating Teams

Two teams of three speakers each are formed. These are referred to as ‘ The House for the Motion ’ or the ‘ Affirmative ’ team and ‘The House Against the Motion ’ or the ‘ Negative ’ team.

Preparation is an essential aspect of debating. The speech and debate team members will need time to research their arguments, collaborate, and organize themselves and their respective roles in the upcoming debate.

They’ll also need time to write and rehearse their speeches. The better prepared and coordinated they are as a team, the greater their chances of success in the debate.

3. Assign Roles to Students.

Each team member should have a specific role, such as speaker, researcher , or rebuttal specialist . This encourages teamwork and ensures that each student is actively involved.

4. Research and Preparation:

  • Allocate time for teams to research and prepare their arguments. Encourage students to use multiple sources, including books, articles, and reputable websites. Make sure you read our complete guide to powerful student research strategies.

5. Set Debate Format:

  • Define the debate format, including the structure of each round. Common formats include opening statements, cross-examination, rebuttals, and closing statements.

6. Establish Rules:

  • Set ground rules for the debate, such as time limits for each speaker, etiquette, guidelines for respectful communication, and consequences for rule violations.

7. Conduct a Practice Debate:

  • Before the actual debate, conduct a practice round. This helps students become familiar with the format and allows you to provide feedback on their arguments and presentation skills.
  • On the day of the debate, set up the classroom to accommodate the format. Ensure that each round has a clear structure, and designate a timekeeper to keep the debate on schedule.

9. Facilitate Q&A Sessions:

  • After each team presents their arguments, allow time for questions and cross-examination. This encourages critical thinking and engagement among the students.

10. Evaluate and Debrief:

  • After the debate, provide constructive feedback to each team. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of their arguments, presentation skills, and teamwork. Also, please encourage students to reflect on what they learned from the experience.
  • Have a class discussion about the debate, exploring different perspectives and opinions. This can deepen students’ understanding of the topic and enhance their critical thinking skills.

Consider integrating the debate topic into future lessons or assignments. This reinforces the learning experience and allows students to delve deeper into the subject matter.

Remember to create a supportive and respectful environment throughout the debate, emphasizing the importance of listening to opposing views and engaging in constructive dialogue.

Each speaker takes a turn making their speech, alternating between the House for the Motion, who goes first, and the House Against the Motion. Each speaker speaks for a pre-agreed amount of time.

Ensure your debate is held in front of an audience (in this case, the class), and occasionally, the audience is given time to ask questions after all the speeches have been made.

Finally, the debate is judged either by moderators or by an audience vote. 

debate speech,debating | debate Organizer Free | How to Write a Winning Debate Speech |

Download our Debate Organizer

Stay fousssed with this handy template to keep all your ideas organized.

How To Write A Debate

How to start a debate speech.

In highly competitive speech and debate tournaments, students are only provided the topic on the day, and limited time is allowed for preparation, but this is not recommended for beginners.

Regardless of the stakes of your classroom debate, the speechwriting process always begins with research. Thorough research will provide students with both the arguments and the supporting evidence for their position on a topic and generate forward-thinking about what their opponents might use against them.

Writing Your Introduction

The purpose of the introduction in a debate speech is to achieve several things:

  • Grab the attention of the audience,
  • Introduce the topic
  • Provide a thesis statement
  • Preview some of the main arguments.

Grab The Attention Of Your Audience With Strong Hooks

Securing the audience’s attention is crucial, and failure to do this will have a strong, negative impact on how the team’s efforts will be scored as a whole. Let’s explore three proven strategies to hook your audience and align their thinking to yours.

Introduce Your Topic With Efficiency and Effectiveness

Once the audience’s attention has been firmly grasped, it’s time to introduce the topic or the motion. This should be done straightforwardly and transparently to ensure the audience understands the topic of the debate and the position you are approaching it from.

For example, if the topic of the debate was school uniforms, the topic may be introduced with:

Provide Your Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is a concise declaration summarizing the points and arguments of your debating speech.

  • It presents a clear stance on a topic and guides the reader on what to expect in the content.
  • A good thesis statement is debatable and allows for opposing viewpoints and discussion.
  • It serves as a roadmap for the writer, ensuring coherence and focus in the piece.
  • It helps the audience understand the purpose and direction of the work from the beginning.

The thesis statement should express the student’s or the team’s position on the motion. Clearly explaining the speaker’s side of the debate. An example can be seen here.

Provide A Preview Of Your Arguments

The final part of the introduction section of a debate speech involves previewing the main points of the speech for the audience.

There is no need to go into detail with each argument here; that’s what the body of the speech is for. It is enough to provide a general thesis statement for each argument or ‘claims’ – (more on this to follow).

Previewing the arguments in a speech is especially important as the audience and judges only get one listen to a speech – unlike a text, which can be reread as frequently as the reader likes.

debate introduction examples for students

Attention grabbers task.

After explaining the different types of attention grabbers and the format for the rest of the introduction to your students, challenge them to write an example of each type of opening for a specific debate topic. 

When they’ve finished writing these speech openings, discuss with the students which one best fits their chosen topic. Then, they can continue by completing the rest of the introduction for their speech using the format described above.

You might like to try a simple topic like “Homework should be banned.” you can choose from our collection further in this article.

Writing T he Body of the Speech

The body paragraphs are the real meat of the speech. They contain the in-depth arguments that make up the substance of the debate, and How well these arguments are made will determine how the judges will assess each speaker’s performance, so it’s essential to get the structure of these arguments just right.

Let’s take a look at how to do that.

How to structure an Argument

With the introduction out of the way, it’s time for the student to get down to the nitty-gritty of the debate – that is, making compelling arguments to support their case.

There are three main aspects to an argument in a debate speech. They are:

  • The Warrant

Following this structure carefully enables our students to build coherent and robust arguments. Ttake a look at these elements in action in the example below.

Brainstorming Arguments

Present your students with a topic and, as a class, brainstorm some arguments for and against the motion.

Then, ask students to choose one argument and, using the Claim-Warrant-Impact format, take a few moments to write down a well-structured argument that’s up to debate standard.

Students can then present their arguments to the class. 

Or, you could also divide the class along pro/con lines and host a mini-debate!

Concluding a Debate Speech

The conclusion of a speech or a debate is the final chance for the speaker to convey their message to the audience. In a formal debate that has a set time limit, the conclusion is crucial as it demonstrates the speaker’s ability to cover all their material within the given time frame.

Avoid introducing new information and focus on reinforcing the strength of your position for a compelling and memorable conclusion.

A good conclusion should refer back to the introduction and restate the main position of the speaker, followed by a summary of the key arguments presented. Finally, the speaker should end the speech with a powerful image that will leave a lasting impression on the audience and judges.

debate speech,debating | classroom debating | How to Write a Winning Debate Speech |

Examples of strong debate Conclusions

The Burden of the Rejoinder

In formal debates, the burden of the rejoinder means that any time an opponent makes a point for their side, it’s incumbent upon the student/team to address that point directly.

Failing to do so will automatically be seen as accepting the truth of the point made by the opponent.

For example, if the opposing side argues that all grass is pink, despite how ridiculous that statement is, failing to refute that point directly means that, for the debate, all grass is pink.

Our students must understand the burden of the rejoinder and ensure that any points the opposing team makes are fully addressed during the debate.

The Devils Advocate

When preparing to write their speech, students should spend a significant proportion of their team collaborating as a team. 

One good way to practice the burden of the rejoinder concept is to use the concept of Devil’s Advocate, whereby one team member acts as a member of the opposing team, posing arguments from the other side for the speaker to counter, sharpening up their refutation skills in the process.

20 Great Debating Topics for Students

  • Should cell phones be allowed in schools?
  • Is climate change primarily caused by human activities?
  • Should the voting age be lowered to 16?
  • Is social media more harmful than beneficial to society?
  • Should genetically modified organisms (GMOs) be embraced or rejected?
  • Is the death penalty an effective crime deterrent?
  • Should schools implement mandatory drug testing for students?
  • Is animal testing necessary for scientific and medical advancements?
  • Should school uniforms be mandatory?
  • Is censorship justified in certain circumstances?
  • Should the use of performance-enhancing drugs be allowed in sports?
  • Is homeschooling more beneficial than traditional schooling?
  • Should the use of plastic bags be banned?
  • Is nuclear energy a viable solution to the world’s energy needs?
  • Should the government regulate the fast food industry?
  • Is social inequality a result of systemic factors or individual choices?
  • Should the consumption of meat be reduced for environmental reasons?
  • Is online learning more effective than traditional classroom learning?
  • Should the use of drones in warfare be banned?
  • Is the legalization of marijuana beneficial for society?

These topics cover a range of subjects and offer students the opportunity to engage in thought-provoking debates on relevant and impactful issues.


debate speech,debating | 1 STUDENts love to share their opinions | The Ultimate Guide to Opinion Writing for Students and Teachers |

The Ultimate Guide to Opinion Writing for Students and Teachers

debate speech,debating | PersuasiveWritingSkills | Top 5 Persuasive Writing Techniques for Students |

Top 5 Persuasive Writing Techniques for Students

debate speech,debating | persuasiveWriting | 5 Top Persuasive Writing Lesson Plans for Students and Teachers |

5 Top Persuasive Writing Lesson Plans for Students and Teachers

debate speech,debating | persuasive writing prompts | 23 Persuasive writing Topics for High School students |

23 Persuasive writing Topics for High School students

debate speech,debating | LEarn how to write a perfect persuasive essay | How to Write Perfect Persuasive Essays in 5 Simple Steps |

How to Write Perfect Persuasive Essays in 5 Simple Steps

Debating strategies for students.

Research and preparation are essential to ensure good performance in a debate. Students should spend as much time as possible drafting and redrafting their speeches to maximize their chances of winning. However, a debate is a dynamic activity, and victory cannot be assured by pre-writing alone.

Students must understand that the key to securing victory lies in also being able to think, write (often in the form of notes), and respond instantly amid the turmoil of the verbal battle. To do this, students must understand the following keys to victory.

When we think of winning a debate, we often think of blinding the enemy with the brilliance of our verbal eloquence. We think of impressing the audience and the judges alike with our outstanding oratory.

What we don’t often picture when we imagine what a debate winner looks like is a quiet figure sitting and listening intently. But being a good listener is one of our students’ most critical debating skills.

If students don’t listen to the other side, whether by researching opposing arguments or during the thrust of the actual debate, they won’t know the arguments the other side is making. Without this knowledge, they cannot effectively refute the opposition’s claims.

Read the Audience

In terms of the writing that happens before the debate takes place, this means knowing your audience. 

Students should learn that how they present their arguments may change according to the demographics of the audience and/or judges to whom they will be making their speech. 

An audience of retired school teachers and an audience of teen students may have very different responses to the same arguments.

This applies during the actual debate itself too. If the student making their speech reads resistance in the faces of the listeners, they should be prepared to adapt their approach accordingly in mid-speech.

Practice, Practice, Practice

The student must practice their speech before the debate. There’s no need to learn it entirely by heart. There isn’t usually an expectation to memorize a speech entirely, and doing so can lead to the speaker losing some of their spontaneity and power in their delivery. At the same time, students shouldn’t spend the whole speech bent over a sheet of paper reading word by word.

Ideally, students should familiarize themselves with the content and be prepared to deliver their speech using flashcards as prompts when necessary.

Another important element for students to focus on when practising their speech is making their body language, facial expressions, and hand gestures coherent with the verbal content of their speech. One excellent way to achieve this is for the student to practice delivering their speech in a mirror.

And Finally…

Debating is a lot of fun to teach and partake in, but it also offers students a valuable opportunity to pick up some powerful life skills.

It helps students develop a knack for distinguishing fact from opinion and an ability to assess whether a source is credible or not. It also helps to encourage them to think about the other side of the argument. 

Debating helps our students understand others, even when disagreeing with them. An important skill in these challenging times, without a doubt.

Debating Teaching Strategies

Clearly Define Debate Roles and Structure when running speech and debate events: Clearly define the roles of speakers, timekeepers, moderators, and audience members. Establish a structured format with specific time limits for speeches, rebuttals, and audience participation. This ensures a well-organized and engaging debate.

  • Provide Topic Selection and Preparation Time: Offer students a range of debate topics, allowing them to select a subject they are passionate about. Allocate ample time for research and preparation, encouraging students to gather evidence, develop strong arguments, and anticipate counterarguments.
  • Incorporate Scaffolded Debating Skills Practice: Before the actual debate, engage students in scaffolded activities that build their debating skills. This can include small group discussions, mock debates, or persuasive writing exercises. Provide feedback and guidance to help students refine their arguments and delivery.
  • Encourage Active Listening and Note-taking during speech and debate competitions: Emphasize the importance of active listening during the debate. Encourage students to take notes on key points, supporting evidence, and persuasive techniques used by speakers. This cultivates critical thinking skills and prepares them for thoughtful responses during rebuttals.
  • Facilitate Post-Debate Reflection and Discussion: After the debate, facilitate a reflection session where students can share their thoughts, lessons learned, and insights gained. Encourage them to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of their arguments and engage in constructive dialogue. This promotes metacognitive skills and encourages continuous improvement.

By following these tips, teachers can create a vibrant and educational debate experience for their students. Through structured preparation, active engagement, and reflective discussions, students develop valuable literacy and critical thinking skills that extend beyond the boundaries of the debate itself.


debate speech,debating | opinion writing unit 1 | How to Write a Winning Debate Speech |



30+ 5-star Ratings ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The Tech Edvocate

  • Advertisement
  • Home Page Five (No Sidebar)
  • Home Page Four
  • Home Page Three
  • Home Page Two
  • Icons [No Sidebar]
  • Left Sidbear Page
  • Lynch Educational Consulting
  • My Speaking Page
  • Newsletter Sign Up Confirmation
  • Newsletter Unsubscription
  • Page Example
  • Privacy Policy
  • Protected Content
  • Request a Product Review
  • Shortcodes Examples
  • Terms and Conditions
  • The Edvocate
  • The Tech Edvocate Product Guide
  • Write For Us
  • Dr. Lynch’s Personal Website
  • The Edvocate Podcast
  • Assistive Technology
  • Child Development Tech
  • Early Childhood & K-12 EdTech
  • EdTech Futures
  • EdTech News
  • EdTech Policy & Reform
  • EdTech Startups & Businesses
  • Higher Education EdTech
  • Online Learning & eLearning
  • Parent & Family Tech
  • Personalized Learning
  • Product Reviews
  • Tech Edvocate Awards
  • School Ratings

How to Fill a Flask: 8 Steps

3 ways to treat skin disease in hamsters, 4 ways to socialize a lory or lorikeet, how to water a christmas tree: 11 steps, 3 ways to make a professional rap music video, 9 simple ways to talk nerdy to someone, how to massage a baby: 15 steps, 3 ways to get rid of suckers from your rose bush, 11 simple ways to ask someone to kiss you, how to create your first java program on ubuntu linux, how to write a debate speech: 10 steps.

how to write a negative debate speech

A well-crafted debate speech can effectively persuade an audience and make a lasting impact. By following these ten steps, you’ll be on your way to creating a powerful and engaging debate speech.

1. Understand the topic: Begin by thoroughly researching the topic of debate. Understand various viewpoints, facts, and statistics to develop a comprehensive understanding of the subject. Familiarize yourself with common arguments for and against the issue.

2. Analyze your audience: Before crafting your speech, spend some time considering who your audience is. What do they already know about the issue? What are their concerns, values, or interests? Tailor your speech to resonate with them.

3. Define your position : Clearly state your stance on the issue at hand. Your position should be strong, specific, and concise – bold statements will keep your audience engaged in the debate.

4. Develop your main arguments: Identify 2-3 compelling arguments supporting your position. These should form the backbone of your debate speech. Be sure to provide evidence, examples, or anecdotes that support each argument.

5. Prepare counterarguments: Anticipate objections from opponents and address these in your speech. By acknowledging opposing viewpoints and providing a persuasive rebuttal, you’ll strengthen your overall argument.

6. Organize your speech: Structure is crucial in presenting an effective debate speech. Begin with a captivating introduction that grabs the attention of the audience, followed by a clear thesis statement outlining your key points. Present each argument (along with its evidence) as separate supporting points before addressing counterarguments.

7. Maintain logic and consistency: Ensure that all elements of your speech are logically connected and coherently presented throughout. Avoid contradicting yourself or presenting irrelevant information.

8. Use persuasive language techniques: Employ rhetorical devices like metaphors, analogies, or hyperbole to enhance the impact of your arguments. Encourage emotional responses from your audience by appealing to values, beliefs, or fears.

9. Write an engaging conclusion: Wrap up your speech by summarizing your main arguments and highlighting their significance. End on a strong note that encourages action or emphasizes the importance of the issue.

10. Practice, practice, practice:   Finally, rehearse your speech multiple times to perfect your delivery. This will not only boost your confidence but also help you identify any errors or areas of the speech that need improvement.

By following these ten steps, you’ll be well on your way to writing a persuasive and memorable debate speech that effectively communicates your position and leaves a lasting impression on your audience.

How to Make a Compass: 8 Steps

4 ways to read and speak like ....

' src=

Matthew Lynch

Related articles more from author.

how to write a negative debate speech

3 Effective Ways to Treat Folliculitis

how to write a negative debate speech

3 Ways to Deal With a Neighbor’s Barking Dog

how to write a negative debate speech

How to Bodyboard

how to write a negative debate speech

How to Grow Wasabi: 14 Steps

how to write a negative debate speech

11 Ways to Respond to a Job Listing on Craigslist

how to write a negative debate speech

3 Ways to Calm Your Horse Down Quickly

  • PRO Courses Guides New Tech Help Pro Expert Videos About wikiHow Pro Upgrade Sign In
  • EDIT Edit this Article
  • EXPLORE Tech Help Pro About Us Random Article Quizzes Request a New Article Community Dashboard This Or That Game Popular Categories Arts and Entertainment Artwork Books Movies Computers and Electronics Computers Phone Skills Technology Hacks Health Men's Health Mental Health Women's Health Relationships Dating Love Relationship Issues Hobbies and Crafts Crafts Drawing Games Education & Communication Communication Skills Personal Development Studying Personal Care and Style Fashion Hair Care Personal Hygiene Youth Personal Care School Stuff Dating All Categories Arts and Entertainment Finance and Business Home and Garden Relationship Quizzes Cars & Other Vehicles Food and Entertaining Personal Care and Style Sports and Fitness Computers and Electronics Health Pets and Animals Travel Education & Communication Hobbies and Crafts Philosophy and Religion Work World Family Life Holidays and Traditions Relationships Youth
  • Browse Articles
  • Learn Something New
  • Quizzes Hot
  • This Or That Game New
  • Train Your Brain
  • Explore More
  • Support wikiHow
  • About wikiHow
  • Log in / Sign up
  • Education and Communications
  • Communication Skills
  • Public Speaking

How to Write a Speech if You're Third Speaker

Last Updated: September 3, 2023 Fact Checked

wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 38 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 297,127 times. Learn more...

There are three key roles on a debate team: first speaker, second speaker and third speaker. While the first and second speakers concentrate on building a substantive case, the third speaker has a unique job in that he or she must use their time to attack their opponent's case. This guide will help you create an outline for your argument if you are the third speaker on your debate team.

Before the Debate

Step 1 Create a list...

  • Make a list of the main arguments of first and second speakers on your team. Use the notes to rebut arguments of the opposing side.
  • Throughout the debate, note down key clashes and the main arguments of the opposing side. [1] X Research source
  • State the clashes and explain/analyze why your side has won in each clash.

Step 2 Draft a persuasive closing statement.

Third Speaker Proposition

Step 1 Restate your team's position.

Third Speaker Opposition

Step 1 Rebut the proposition's arguments by using a new and different angle for your argument.

  • It is important to note that if you are a third speaker on an opposing team, you are not creating a constructive argument. Presenting a new argument at this time would not allow the proposing team to rebut. The arguments you are defending are arguments that have already been made by your first and second speakers.

Step 3 Provide a concise...

Community Q&A

Community Answer

  • Know your argument. [7] X Research source Thanks Helpful 3 Not Helpful 0
  • Start research on your position early so that you are adequately prepare to write a proper speech. Thanks Helpful 2 Not Helpful 1
  • Take notes and adjust your speech as you listen to each speaker. Thanks Helpful 2 Not Helpful 0

how to write a negative debate speech

You Might Also Like

Rebut Better

  • ↑
  • ↑
  • ↑
  • ↑

About This Article

If you’re the third speaker on your debate team, you’ll need to write a speech that attacks the opponent’s case. Before the debate, make a list of key points from the first and second speaker so you have them ready when it’s time for your closing summary. You can add to these notes during the actual debate so you can incorporate information about your challenger’s arguments. To make your proposition, restate your team’s position and rebut the opposition’s arguments. Then, defend your affirmative arguments with your own, unique supporting examples. Finally, end your speech with your closing statement. To learn how to give your opposition, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

  • Send fan mail to authors

Did this article help you?

Am I a Narcissist or an Empath Quiz

Featured Articles

Be Clean

Trending Articles

View an Eclipse

Watch Articles

Make Sticky Rice Using Regular Rice

  • Terms of Use
  • Privacy Policy
  • Do Not Sell or Share My Info
  • Not Selling Info

wikiHow Tech Help Pro:

Develop the tech skills you need for work and life

Instant Debate Speech Maker Online

Debates are an excellent opportunity to develop many personal skills, become a more open-minded person, and learn new information. Through this activity, students improve critical thinking, public speaking, teamwork skills, increase their self-esteem, and learn to disagree with others.

Preparing for a debate can take a lot of time, which is why our team has created this tool and guide for you. With our debate speech maker, you no longer have to sit for hours and think about how to formulate your argument correctly! Also, on this page you will learn many useful facts about debates and get tips for preparing for them.

  • 📢 Introduction to the Tool

🗣️ What Is a Debate?

👍 debate maker benefits, ✏️ how to write a debate speech, 🔗 references, 📢 debate script maker: an introduction.

If you’ve decided to participate in a debate, you probably know that this activity requires a lot of preparation. Sometimes, you may receive the topic of your debate in advance so that you have time to prepare thoroughly for it. But also, you may be given the subject on the day of the debate, and then you’ll have much less time to prepare. In either case, our debate maker will be an indispensable assistant!

When comparing AI vs human writers, artificial intelligence excels in the speed of content creation, although it loses in creativity. Unlike when using other AI chat bots, you don't have to bother with creating successful prompts. Using this tool is simple - to instantly make a speech, you’ll need to take these four steps:

  • Type in the topic of the debate.
  • State your position and audience.
  • Indicate whether you are replying to an opponent.
  • Click “Generate” and get your result!

A debate is a structured and formalized argumentative exchange between two or more opposing sides . While this practice is usually associated with the election season , it can also be often found in schools or colleges. Participants, categorized as either the “pro” or “con” side, systematically present and defend their perspectives on a given topic. They use evidence to back up their claims and. Each side takes turns articulating arguments and responding to their opponent's points.

The primary objective of a debate is persuasion - convincing the opposition and the audience. Although debates often lack a declared winner, they may conclude with a vote or judgment from adjudicators in formal settings. Informal debates can persist until one side concedes.

Debate Terminology Examples for Students

Here, you can become familiar with the basic terms. It’ll be beneficial for you to learn them to make it easier to grasp the debate structure further.

  • Adjudicator - An impartial observer who evaluates the debate. Such moderators provide feedback on the quality of arguments and overall performance. Also, they can contribute to determining the winner in formal debates.
  • An affirmative - A team or speaker supporting the motion in a debate. Affirmatives present arguments in favor of the proposition. They aim to convince the audience or adjudicators of the motion's validity.
  • Motion - The central topic, idea, or statement being debated. The motion frames the discussion and determines the stances of the affirmative and opposition sides. Debaters construct arguments either in support or against this subject.
  • Chairperson - The person responsible for moderating and overseeing the debate. Their goal is to maintain order and ensure adherence to the rules. The chairperson may introduce speakers and the motion.
  • Card - A card is a paragraph or several paragraphs taken from an authoritative journalistic or scholarly source that proves the validity of a particular argument. It should be a verbatim quotation without additions or paraphrasing. It is important to explain the quote and how it relates to the argument.
  • Floor - The general audience or participants who are not actively engaged in the debate but may have the opportunity to pose questions. They can make contributions during designated segments. The floor adds an interactive element to the discussion.
  • Opposition/a Negative - A team or speaker taking an opposing stance on the core topic. The opposition presents arguments countering the proposition. Such arguments should demonstrate flaws in the affirmative's position and persuade the audience that the motion is unsupported.
  • The first speaker - The initial speaker of a team. They introduce and establish the main arguments supporting or opposing the motion. Their speech should set the tone for the team's position and outline the critical points to be developed by subsequent speakers.
  • The second speaker - The second speaker introduces additional evidence and reinforces the team's position. They aim to strengthen their affirmative/opposing case and respond to the arguments from the other team.
  • The third speaker - The last speaker should summarize the team's key points. They may also respond to opposition’s reasons raised during the debate. The goal is to leave a lasting impression on the adjudicators before the discussion concludes.
  • Reply speeches - Reply speeches are the concluding words from both the affirmative and opposition sides. These speeches are often shorter, not more than three minutes. Such speeches are the last chance to influence the overall impression, so they should strongly support your ideas.

What Does the Maker of the Argument Do in a Debate?

In a debate, the first speaker, whether on the affirmative or opposition side, should:

  • Formulate a clear and concise stance on the motion.
  • Organize arguments logically, presenting a structured case.
  • Support points with relevant facts and examples.
  • Convince adjudicators and the audience of the credibility of their position.

The Structure of a Debate

Whether an academic debate or a parliamentary one, the structure and ground rules essentially remain the same.

In this section, we'll briefly explain how your proceedings are going to look like:

  • Gathering the sides . At this stage, you should determine the teams and their participants. They are divided into affirmative and negative sides. As a rule, the debates should include three speakers , who will take turns and, at each stage, strengthen their position. All participants should meet 15 minutes before the start to prepare materials .
  • Starting the debate . Participants should determine the debate’s time limit, as speeches cannot last nonstop. Usually, each speaker is given a maximum of 3 minutes for their presentation. At the beginning, the speakers should introduce themselves. The duration of the answer is regulated by the timekeeper , who should give a bell 30 seconds before the end of the speaker's time to start summarizing.
  • Debating the topic . The core of the debate involves a structured exchange between the sides. The first speaker for the affirmative introduces the motion, presenting key arguments. The opposition's first speaker responds, presenting counterarguments. This pattern continues with subsequent speakers building upon and responding to the points raised. The debate format could also include cross-examination or questioning segments.
  • Finishing the debate . Both sides deliver final counter-speeches summarizing key arguments. The adjudicators then assess the overall performance of each side. The persuasiveness of the arguments presented assists in the audience’s decision-making. Participants may engage in discussions and receive feedback . After the debate, each team is given the opportunity to thank everyone in attendance.

As you've probably already realized, getting ready for such a significant event will take a lot of time. You'll need to gather your thoughts, stay level-headed, and be assertive in your stance. This preparation process can be quite overwhelming. That's why our debate script maker is the perfect solution!

This debate writer has many advantages:

Our tool is a great way to save time and get that initial burst of inspiration for your debate. However, that is just the beginning. You will still need to edit and finalize this speech. Additionally, you may find it helpful to learn how to write one yourself.

The following steps will show you how to improve your speech and prepare you for your future debates:

  • Compelling beginning . The opening of your speech is of the utmost significance. Your task is to captivate the audience and create the overall atmosphere of the speech. We suggest using a hook at the very beginning. It can be a question or a fact intended to capture the attention of your opposition and the audience. You could also use a quote from a famous person, an interesting statistic, a rhetorical question, or even a relevant personal anecdote.
  • Presenting your arguments . This is the time to talk about your position on the topic. Be sure to formulate a concise thesis statement . After that, you should provide the arguments that support it. Explain each point clearly to avoid misunderstanding among the audience.
  • Explaining the position . Follow a structure where each of your arguments is followed by evidence and then justification. Proof builds credibility and engages the listeners. Ensure that you have data only from relevant and reliable sources.
  • Summarizing . In the concluding part of your persuasive speech, you should reiterate your thesis and essential arguments. Emphasize the value of your position. It’s your last opportunity to impress the judge and the listeners. Round it off by offering a provocative question, a recommendation, or talking about your predictions for the future of the subject.
  • Confidence and consistency . After writing your speech, you should refine its structure so that you have smooth transitions from one idea to the next. Use connecting words to tie your arguments together. Afterward, practice your speech and make sure it's clear . Your gestures, facial expressions, and intonation are ways to communicate with listeners. Be convincing but not pushy, and use a moderate pace.

We wish you good luck in your debates! And if you need to create a different kind of speech, try our informative speech generator .

Updated: Jan 26th, 2024

  • What is a debate? – Vanesa Velkova, European Commission
  • How debating works – Law Society of Scotland
  • Debating: A Brief Introduction for Beginners – Debating SA Incorporated
  • Debate Timing & Structure - Debating Matters
  • How do you structure your debate speech to capture the attention and interest of your audience? - LinkedIn
  • Free Essays
  • Writing Tools
  • Lit. Guides
  • Donate a Paper
  • Referencing Guides
  • Free Textbooks
  • Tongue Twisters
  • Job Openings
  • Expert Application
  • Video Contest
  • Writing Scholarship
  • Discount Codes
  • IvyPanda Shop
  • Terms and Conditions
  • Privacy Policy
  • Cookies Policy
  • Copyright Principles
  • DMCA Request
  • Service Notice

Our debate speech maker tool is the perfect solution for those who wish to deliver the perfect response to their opponents. Easily generate a speech on any topic and wow the audience with your eloquence. Additionally, learn all about debates, their structure, and find useful tips.

  • Share full article

A photo illustration with black and white pictures of Tom Clare and Libby Locke, with torn pieces of legal documents around them.

How a Case Against Fox News Tore Apart a Media-Fighting Law Firm

Tensions had been brewing for years inside Clare Locke, a top defamation law firm. Then came the biggest defamation case of them all.

Credit... Mark Harris

Supported by

David Enrich

By David Enrich

  • April 10, 2024 Updated 10:31 a.m. ET

Last April, dozens of lawyers and their guests gathered at the Columbus Inn in Wilmington, Del. The revered restaurant, with roots tracing back more than two centuries, was once a hangout for Buffalo Bill. Yet on this cloudless night, the crowd would have been happy to be partying almost anywhere.

Hours earlier, the lawyers and their client, Dominion Voting Systems, had negotiated an extraordinary $787 million settlement with Fox News. The deal was struck moments before opening arguments in a hotly anticipated defamation trial, in which Fox was accused of airing inflammatory lies that Dominion had thwarted Donald J. Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Now the company’s two main law firms could enjoy the spoils.

Susman Godfrey would pocket a thick slice of the settlement that Fox had just wired over.

Clare Locke, a smaller firm that specializes in the niche field of defamation law, wouldn’t get a cut of the settlement. But Dominion had already paid it millions of dollars in fees, and the victory offered the firm the potential for something even greater.

Run by the husband-and-wife team of Tom Clare and Libby Locke, the firm had helped popularize efforts by wealthy and powerful clients to attack news organizations and delegitimize or kill unfavorable articles. Ms. Locke in particular had taken to publicly arguing that much of the news media was unethical, though she also voiced support for free speech.

The triumph against Fox gave the firm’s founders an opportunity to widen their appeal. They could argue that Clare Locke was not an enemy of the free press or the First Amendment, but a champion of truth and a guardian of democracy.

At the Columbus Inn, the exhausted but jubilant lawyers drank and toasted one another late into the evening.

“Celebrating tonight,” Ms. Locke wrote in an email at 10:55 p.m. She added, “It’s a bit crazy here on our end.”

It was even crazier than she realized. The case had made legal history — but it had also torn the firm apart.

Friction among lawyers at Clare Locke had been building for years, and much of it centered on Ms. Locke. Her colleagues chafed at her management style. Some feared that her public embrace of conservative causes, including on Fox News, was alienating clients.

Then came Dominion.

Mr. Clare had been committed to the case since late 2020. Ms. Locke had at times publicly boasted about the Dominion lawsuit, too — but she also repeatedly tried to pull her firm off the case, including shortly before the trial was set to begin, according to several people with knowledge of the firm’s inner workings. Many of the more than two dozen people interviewed for this article requested anonymity to avoid professional repercussions.

While Ms. Locke’s efforts failed, they had shattered morale and confidence inside the small but formidable firm.

As she made her rounds in the dark, crowded room at the Columbus Inn, Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke didn’t know that most of their firm’s partners had already decided to resign.

In a series of letters totaling nearly 60 pages, Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said The New York Times was spreading falsehoods about them and their firm. They said the firm had not tried to get off the Dominion case: “To the contrary, Tom and Libby were pushing for the firm to have an even larger role.”

The pair accused The Times of relying on sources “with a vested interest in maligning Tom and Libby’s reputation to grow their own fledgling business.” And they said that Clare Locke had faced The Times in court and that the article was “clearly seeking to strengthen the paper’s position in pending and future litigation.”

Keep calm and sue

Libby Locke and Tom Clare leaving a courthouse.

Before starting their boutique defamation shop, Mr. Clare, 53, and Ms. Locke, 44, worked at the giant international law firm of Kirkland & Ellis, where both were partners.

Mr. Clare, a workhorse who sometimes billed nearly 3,000 hours a year, had been an understudy to a senior partner whose practice included high-profile defamation cases. Ms. Locke arrived at Kirkland in 2006 after graduating from Georgetown University’s law school, where she’d led the local chapter of the conservative Federalist Society. Mr. Clare soon became a mentor.

In 2014, they founded Clare Locke. The public explanation, which they recounted in interviews over the years, was that they had grown frustrated at Kirkland, which sometimes blocked them from taking defamation cases that conflicted with the firm’s bread-and-butter work for corporate clients.

There was more to their origin story, though. Senior partners at Kirkland had fielded complaints that Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke, who at the time were married to other people, were having an affair, according to six current and former Kirkland employees. Ms. Locke often reported to Mr. Clare.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke denied at the time that they were romantically involved. But Kirkland partners told them that if the relationship continued, at least one of them would have to leave the firm, four of the current and former employees said.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said that “this is not true and any suggestion to the contrary would be false and defamatory.” (A Kirkland spokeswoman declined to comment.)

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke set up their firm in the wealthy Washington suburb of Alexandria, Va., near where they both lived with their respective spouses and children. They recruited a small group of lawyers and staff members from Kirkland to join them.

One morning in 2015, the new firm’s lawyers were surprised to receive a mass email from Ms. Locke’s husband, Spencer R. Fisher. He wrote that he had discovered that Ms. Locke’s relationship with Mr. Clare was more than professional. Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke had previously assured employees that they were not romantically involved, according to Megan L. Meier and Andy Phillips, two of Clare Locke’s first recruits. Mr. Fisher’s email planted seeds of distrust, with some employees beginning to worry about their ability to communicate openly with their bosses.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke denied telling Ms. Meier and Mr. Phillips that they were not romantically involved, and they said the employees did not mention concerns about a lack of trust.

Mr. Fisher, in an email to The Times, didn’t answer questions about the message he had sent to Clare Locke employees and others. “Libby is not only a brilliant lawyer, but also a compassionate and giving person,” he said. “She has a strong sense of ethics and responsibility, and she is always willing to help those in need.”

Clare Locke’s fortunes soon soared. In 2016, the firm won a roughly $3 million jury verdict on behalf of a dean at the University of Virginia who had been defamed by a deeply flawed article in Rolling Stone magazine. The victory generated national headlines.

A procession of lucrative clients came calling for help combating the media. There were hedge fund kingpins and Silicon Valley executives accused of personal or business misconduct. There were politicians facing allegations of sexual improprieties. There were litigious foreign businessmen . There was a wing of the Sackler family , of OxyContin notoriety. There were Russian oligarchs like Oleg Deripaska , although Clare Locke has since stopped representing him.

“Keep calm and file libel suits,” read a framed sign hanging in Clare Locke’s office.

The firm represented the former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and Project Veritas , the group of right-wing provocateurs, in lawsuits against The Times. The Project Veritas case is ongoing.

Litigation, however, tended to be a last resort. More frequently, Mr. Clare, Ms. Locke and their colleagues sought to derail or shape stories before publication. To do this, they cranked out warning letters to reporters, editors, publishers and their lawyers trying to poke holes in planned articles and accusing journalists of bias, unethical behavior and getting facts wrong. Citing the possibility of litigation, the letters often instructed news organizations to preserve all documents, notes and other materials associated with their reporting.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke used similar tactics as The Times prepared this article. In one email to a Times lawyer, Ms. Locke called this reporter “a misogynist and a snake.” She and Mr. Clare told The Times to preserve all documents related to this article.

The pair said they only pursued media outlets that got facts wrong, and they denied trying to kill unfavorable articles. “The firm takes clients who have valid complaints about how they were mistreated by the media,” they said.

“They are fierce advocates for their clients and not for themselves,” said Leland Vittert, a former Fox News correspondent who is now an anchor at the cable network NewsNation. He said he became friends with Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke after they helped his family’s business in Michigan confront negative local media coverage in 2016. “I’ve always seen them as people who just care about the truth.”

Piloting the Cessna

Clare Locke generally charged by the hour; Mr. Clare’s rate sometimes was about $1,800, according to people with knowledge of the firm’s finances. (Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke wouldn’t discuss the firm’s finances but said that they charge the same hourly rate.) The firm often required clients to pay tens of thousands of dollars in upfront retainers — and more if the client wanted to explicitly threaten to sue. Even fairly anodyne letters to media organizations could cost clients nearly six figures.

Before long, Clare Locke was pulling in tens of millions of dollars a year in revenue. While the firm had several partners, Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke were the only two with ownership stakes, and the people familiar with the firm’s finances estimated that the founders each took home millions of dollars a year.

In 2017, after divorcing their spouses and about three years after starting their firm, they married. Ms. Meier, the first recruit to their firm, officiated their Georgetown wedding.

The couple bought a $4.3 million house down the street from their firm’s offices. They purchased a lakefront home in Ms. Locke’s native Georgia and spent long stretches at a property in the Turks and Caicos, according to public records and acquaintances. Mr. Clare piloted the firm’s Cessna jet between those and other locations.

Colleagues described both Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke as smart and hard-working; in their written response to The Times, the couple noted that she twice returned early from maternity leaves “because of her dedication to her work and clients.”

In other ways, though, they differed. He was risk-averse and calm, colleagues said. She was entrepreneurial and could be impetuous. At a conference last fall, Mr. Clare and other media lawyers were onstage discussing the Dominion case when Ms. Locke interrupted from the audience to express her view that the media has too many legal protections, according to panelists, some of whom said they were taken aback by her outburst. “We like to joke that ours is a story of fire and ice,” Mr. Clare said on a podcast last year.

Thanks in part to the high-profile Rolling Stone victory, Ms. Locke became a popular booking for TV shows and at public events to debate media law and the scope of the First Amendment.

At a Federalist Society conference, she argued in favor of unmasking journalists’ confidential sources, which would represent a break from longstanding legal precedents and the laws of many states. At that conference and elsewhere, she called for the overturning of a series of Supreme Court decisions that made it harder for public figures to win libel lawsuits — a stance that has gained support from at least two justices, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch , and would generally benefit her firm’s clients.

Behind the scenes, Ms. Locke helped Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida organize an event last year to argue for diluting legal protections for the media, according to emails and other documents that The Times obtained via public records requests.

Ms. Locke also appeared three times on Tucker Carlson’s top-rated Fox News show. He praised her as “one of the most successful lawyers in this small but important field” of defamation law.

In internal Slack messages that the firm provided to The Times, Ms. Locke’s colleagues applauded their boss’s performances on Fox News. Privately, though, some worried about what clients would think of the firm’s associating with a show that often trafficked in xenophobia and falsehoods.

Manna for lawyers

About three weeks after the 2020 election, Mr. Clare was preparing for Thanksgiving when he got a phone call from a representative of Dominion.

Conspiracy theorists were flooding the airwaves and social media with false accusations that Dominion’s voting technology, in use in 28 states, was partly to blame for Mr. Trump’s defeat. Trump allies like Sidney Powell, Rudy Giuliani and Mike Lindell were claiming that the company had changed or canceled people’s votes and that it was controlled by the Venezuelan government, among other baseless charges. Outlets like Fox News and One America News amplified the falsehoods.

Dominion’s business was under siege. Its employees faced threats.

Mr. Clare agreed to take the company on as a client. “We recognized right away just how momentous an issue this was, not only for Dominion, but for the entire country and the integrity of elections,” he later told Reuters .

Mr. Clare and his colleagues began sending scores of cease-and-desist letters warning Trump allies , media personalities and news organizations that they were disseminating defamatory lies. The goal was twofold: to stop the smears of Dominion and, failing that, to create a paper trail showing that the potential defendants had been put on notice.

The lies continued.

In January 2021, shortly after a Trump-inspired mob attacked the Capitol, Dominion brought on Susman Godfrey, a litigation powerhouse with more than 150 lawyers. It had become clear that Dominion would file a slew of lawsuits and that Clare Locke was too small to handle them all on its own. In addition, Clare Locke was charging Dominion by the hour, and the bills were already piling up. Susman Godfrey agreed to take the case on contingency, meaning it would get a cut of any settlement or damages but wouldn’t charge the company in the meantime. (Susman Godfrey represents The Times in a copyright lawsuit against OpenAI and Microsoft.)

The complaint against Fox was filed in March 2021, in state court in Delaware, where Dominion and Fox were both incorporated. Including exhibits, it ran to 441 pages . It accused Fox of knowingly providing a platform for guests to lie about Dominion, and it accused numerous hosts, including Mr. Carlson, Maria Bartiromo and Lou Dobbs, of endorsing and repeating those lies. The suit sought more than $1.6 billion in damages.

Susman Godfrey took the lead on the lawsuit, but Clare Locke had some crucial assignments. It was largely responsible for fending off Fox’s motions to dismiss the case. Mr. Clare and his colleague Ms. Meier also handled depositions of some important Fox figures. One was Mr. Carlson, who emerged from his August 2022 deposition rattled by Mr. Clare. “It was so unhealthy,” he fumed in a leaked video , “the hate that I felt for that guy.”

The biggest bombshells emerged from the discovery process, in which Dominion’s lawyers got to sift through Fox employees’ emails, text messages and other records.

They learned that Fox News had an internal research operation, known as the “Brainroom,” that had concluded that the allegations about Dominion switching votes were “100% false.” Hosts, producers and executives had repeatedly written to one another that they knew the network was broadcasting false claims. “Sidney Powell is lying,” Mr. Carlson had written to his producer in November 2020, even as Fox kept putting her on air.

This kind of documentation was like manna for the Dominion team. Lawyers zapped messages back and forth marveling at what they were reading. “I’m not sure I’ll ever see that type of evidence again,” Mr. Clare said on a panel last year .

Talk of quitting

Despite the apparent strength of Dominion’s case, Ms. Locke was unhappy.

On multiple occasions in late 2022 and early 2023, Mr. Clare told colleagues that he had discussed the case with his wife and that she wanted the firm to stop working on it, according to several people with knowledge of the conversation, including Daniel P. Watkins, one of the Clare Locke partners on the Dominion suit. Mr. Clare told colleagues that he was inclined to grant Ms. Locke’s wish.

“She didn’t want us to work on the case and was very expressive about it,” said Mr. Watkins, who later left to start a new firm.

Mr. Clare denied making the remarks about quitting. “The firm did not want to get off the case, and it did not,” he and Ms. Locke said in their written response. The two said they pushed for a larger role on the case but declined to provide details.

Ms. Locke told people that Clare Locke wasn’t being adequately paid for its extensive work. One issue was that the fee arrangement the firm had negotiated with Dominion imposed a cap on the total amount that could be billed, a limit that was fast approaching. At one point, Ms. Locke said the firm would need to stop working as soon as that cap was hit, even if it happened in the middle of the trial, according to people familiar with the internal deliberations.

Some lawyers involved in the Dominion litigation doubted that was the full explanation. They believed that Ms. Locke wanted to ditch Dominion in part because her law firm and husband were in secondary roles and she had barely any direct involvement in the high-profile case. Mr. Watkins noted that Ms. Locke at times would change the subject when he and his colleagues began excitedly discussing what they regarded as the case of the century.

“She was upset when things didn’t revolve around her,” Mr. Watkins said.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke dismissed that as “demonstrably false and absolutely ridiculous, not to mention completely sexist.” While Ms. Locke was not listed in court filings as a lawyer on the Dominion case, they said she made “many contributions,” including helping prepare for and sitting in on the deposition of Mr. Carlson.

Mr. Clare’s colleagues told him repeatedly that quitting the case would be a public embarrassment because people would assume that Dominion had fired the firm, according to lawyers with knowledge of the discussions.

Ultimately, Mr. Clare agreed to stay on the case.

The trial was scheduled for mid-April. Lawyers descended on Wilmington weeks in advance. The Dominion team booked entire floors of the DoubleTree hotel next to the court complex.

Mr. Clare was one of the few Dominion lawyers not staying in Wilmington; to the irritation of some Clare Locke and Susman Godfrey lawyers, he spent most of the first two weeks of April in the Turks and Caicos. He arrived in Wilmington the day before the trial was initially scheduled to begin.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said he was fully engaged in trial preparation while working remotely. He wasn’t scheduled to cross-examine witnesses until later in the trial.

The judge urged the two sides to take a final stab at settling. Negotiations went down to the wire . Finally, just as opening arguments were about to start, there was a deal: Fox would pay Dominion $787.5 million.

The judge announced the settlement to a stunned courtroom. Before the lawyers headed to the Columbus Inn, Fox wired the money to Dominion’s accounts. (In a statement for this article, Dominion said that it was grateful to all of its lawyers “for their world-class support.”)

It was one of the largest defamation settlements in U.S. history, but it seemed to undercut an argument Ms. Locke had been making about constitutional protections of the media.

For years, she had been calling for the Supreme Court to overturn its famous 1964 ruling in New York Times v. Sullivan, which required public officials to overcome high hurdles to win defamation cases. Ms. Locke and her allies argue that Sullivan, as well as a handful of subsequent decisions, makes it all but impossible to hold the media accountable when they wrecked reputations.

But the Sullivan precedent didn’t get in the way of Fox’s being held to account to the tune of nearly $800 million.

Ms. Locke, however, did not back down. To her, the Dominion lawsuit revealed a fundamentally dishonest media that had been emboldened by undeserved constitutional protections. “I think the settlement shows just how comfortable the mainstream press has become under the Sullivan regime lying to the American public,” she said the week after the deal.

Anger and an exodus

Even though Clare Locke had stuck with Dominion, questions about its commitment to the case had sapped some partners’ confidence in the firm’s leadership — the latest in a long list of grievances.

Some partners felt that because they didn’t have equity stakes in the firm, they were being underpaid. They were unhappy when the firm hired a lawyer from Project Veritas, an organization whose tradecraft included deceptive tactics , without consulting the partners. They resented what they saw as Ms. Locke’s harsh treatment of some subordinates. And they worried that prospective clients would be turned off by the perception of Ms. Locke as an ideological warrior.

By the time of the Dominion settlement, four Clare Locke partners — Ms. Meier, Mr. Watkins, Mr. Phillips and Dustin Pusch — had decided to quit to start their own law firm.

Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said that the four “never expressed ‘frustrations’ or ‘resentment’ to Tom or Libby” and had said in self-evaluation memos that they had confidence in the firm and its management. They said that the partners had each earned millions of dollars and that some of them had praised the firm’s compensation policies.

One morning in early August, the four partners gathered in a conference room in Clare Locke’s offices, according to Mr. Watkins and other people familiar with the meeting. The firm’s two founders joined via Zoom.

Ms. Meier and her colleagues broke the news: They were going to issue a news release announcing the creation of their new firm, which would be called Meier Watkins Phillips Pusch. Aside from Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke, there would be only one remaining partner at their firm.

The two founders seemed stunned. Mr. Clare, whose camera was off for most of the meeting, said he wasn’t sure that the firm would be able to continue to operate. (Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said that “there was NEVER a moment when anyone thought or said that the firm would not survive.”)

Ms. Locke asked when the departures were effective. “Twenty minutes ago,” Mr. Watkins responded.

There was silence. Ms. Locke began to cry.

Headline-worthy clients

Any concerns about Clare Locke’s ability to keep operating quickly proved unfounded. The firm replenished its ranks by promoting associates to partners and hiring new lawyers, including another veteran of Project Veritas.

“Clare Locke is a better and stronger law firm today than before the departures,” Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said. They said the former partners’ “true motivation” for creating their own firm was to snatch for themselves a multimillion-dollar fee from an ongoing defamation lawsuit, which Mr. Watkins and others had filed on behalf of a company called Kytch while at Clare Locke.

Mr. Phillips disputed that. He said that Kytch fired Clare Locke last fall, after the four partners had created their new firm, which is now representing the company. (Clare Locke this month filed a lawsuit seeking legal fees from Kytch.)

At the same time, Clare Locke kept attracting headline-worthy clients.

Last fall, Harvard’s president, Claudine Gay, came under fire from activists and alumni like the hedge fund manager Bill Ackman, who accused her of plagiarism . The university hired Clare Locke to defend Ms. Gay and to warn The New York Post about the prospect of litigation if it published articles about the allegations. The Post ran its stories, and Ms. Gay soon resigned as president.

Then Clare Locke began representing Mr. Ackman. In January, Business Insider published articles accusing his wife, Neri Oxman, of plagiarism. Mr. Ackman hired Clare Locke to write a 77-page letter threatening the outlet with litigation if it didn’t retract the claims. Business Insider has stood by its articles.

In a recent interview with The Times, Mr. Ackman said he was upset with the media’s power “to destroy lives.” Announcing the letter on X, he called Ms. Locke and Mr. Clare “the rock stars of defamation law. They should be your first call if something like what happened to Neri and me happens to you.”

Their firm, Mr. Ackman noted, was “best known for its recent representation of Dominion.”

Kitty Bennett contributed research.

David Enrich is the business investigations editor for The Times. His coverage has focused on law and business as well as the banking industry. He has reported on corporate law firms, the First Amendment and libel law, and faltering banks. More about David Enrich

Explore Our Business Coverage

Dive deeper into the people, issues and trends shaping the world of business..

Stopping a Huge Cyberattack: A Microsoft engineer noticed something was off on a piece of software he worked on. He soon discovered someone was probably trying to gain access to computers all over the world .

Hoping for an A.I. Productivity Boost:  Economists doubt that A.I. is already visible in productivity data . Big companies, however, talk often about adopting it to improve efficiency.

Cashing In on Graffiti:  Brands, developers and even officials are embracing the global appeal of street art , but the boom comes with questions about preserving a neighborhood’s cultural cachet.

‘Twitter Menace’ or True Believer?: The deep-pocketed tech investor Garry Tan says he wants to save San Francisco. But his pugnacious online habits are making him enemies .

A C.E.O.’s Bold Claims:  Amira Yahyaoui, a human rights activist, promoted the success of her student aid start-up, Mos. Some of her statements do not add up .


  • Opportunities
  • Free Speech
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Transparency
  • International
  • Deeplinks Blog
  • Press Releases
  • Legal Cases
  • Whitepapers
  • Annual Reports
  • Action Center
  • Electronic Frontier Alliance
  • Privacy Badger
  • Surveillance Self-Defense
  • Atlas of Surveillance
  • Cover Your Tracks
  • Crocodile Hunter
  • Donate to EFF
  • Giving Societies
  • Other Ways to Give
  • Membership FAQ

Search form

  • Copyright (CC BY)
  • Privacy Policy

how to write a negative debate speech

Virtual Reality and the 'Virtual Wall'

how to write a negative debate speech

When EFF set out to map surveillance technology along the U.S.-Mexico border, we weren't exactly sure how to do it. We started with public records—procurement documents, environmental assessments, and the like—which allowed us to find the GPS coordinates of scores of towers. During a series of in-person trips, we were able to find even more. Yet virtual reality ended up being one of the key tools in not only discovering surveillance at the border, but also in educating people about Customs & Border Protection's so-called "virtual wall" through VR tours .

EFF Director of Investigations Dave Maass recently gave a lightning talk at University of Nevada, Reno's annual XR Meetup explaining how virtual reality, perhaps ironically, has allowed us to better understand the reality of border surveillance.


Related Issues

Join eff lists, discover more., related updates.

Infrastructures of Control

"Infrastructures of Control": Q&A with the Geographers Behind University of Arizona's Border Surveillance Photo Exhibition

Guided by EFF's map of Customs & Border Protection surveillance towers, University of Arizona geographers Colter Thomas and Dugan Meyer have been methodologically traversing the U.S.-Mexico border and photographing the infrastructure that comprises the so-called "virtual wall."

Anduril Sentry tower beside the Rio Grande

how to write a negative debate speech

A Virtual Reality Tour of Surveillance Tech at the Border: A Conversation with Dave Maass of the Electronic Frontier Foundation

Surveillance and the u.s.-mexico border: 2023 year in review.

The U.S.-Mexico border continues to be one of the most politicized spaces in the country, with leaders in both political parties supporting massive spending on border security, including technological solutions such as the so-called "virtual wall." We spent the year documenting surveillance technologies at the border and the impacts on...

how to write a negative debate speech

The State of Chihuahua Is Building a 20-Story Tower in Ciudad Juarez to Surveil 13 Cities–and Texas Will Also Be Watching

how to write a negative debate speech

CBP Is Expanding Its Surveillance Tower Program at the U.S.-Mexico Border–And We're Mapping It

how to write a negative debate speech

From Camera Towers to Spy Blimps, Border Researchers Now Can Use 65+ Open-licensed Images of Surveillance Tech from EFF

The U.S.-Mexico border is one of the most politicized technological spaces in the country, with leaders in both political parties supporting massive spending on border security and the so-called "Virtual Wall." Yet we see little debate over the negative impacts for human rights or the civil liberties of those who...

how to write a negative debate speech

A National Lab Is Promoting a "Digital Police Officer" Fantasy for Law Enforcement and Border Control

Researchers at a national laboratory are forecasting a future where police and border agents are assisted by artificial intelligence, not as a software tool but as an autonomous partner capable of taking the steering wheel during pursuits and scouring social media to target people for closer investigation. The "Digital Police...

icon of a border agent examining digital devices

No Digital Surveillance of Iranians at the U.S. Border—Or Within the U.S.

This image shows a person's face with layers of pixelation throughout.

Victory: San Diego to Suspend Face Recognition Program, Limits ICE Access To Criminal Justice Data

We just stopped one of the largest, longest running, and most controversial face recognition programs operated by local law enforcement in the United States. A face recognition system used by more than 30 agencies in San Diego County, California will be suspended on Jan. 1, 2020, according to a...

how to write a negative debate speech

Harvard Student’s Deportation Raises Concerns About Border Device Searches and Social Media Surveillance

Back to top

Follow EFF:

Check out our 4-star rating on Charity Navigator .

  • Internships
  • Diversity & Inclusion
  • Creativity & Innovation
  • EFFector Newsletter
  • Press Contact
  • Join or Renew Membership Online
  • One-Time Donation Online

how to write a negative debate speech


  1. How To Write A Debate Speech In #6 Proven Steps

    how to write a negative debate speech

  2. how to write a debate speech example

    how to write a negative debate speech

  3. Six Easy Steps to Write a Debate

    how to write a negative debate speech

  4. 10 Proven Tips: How to Write a Debate in 2023

    how to write a negative debate speech

  5. how to write a debate speech example

    how to write a negative debate speech

  6. how to write a debate speech example

    how to write a negative debate speech


  1. value debate speech

  2. Negative Debate Speech: Gun Control

  3. Brief Formats: Other

  4. Debate Like a Pro Part 1│Kid's Guide to Winning Arguments by 7-Year-Old Prodigy│Moriahdene Kelly

  5. How to write negative sentences on simple present tense #accent #spokenenglish #english #coaching

  6. Debate speech in school competition on the topic of indigently مفلسی


  1. PDF The Debating Cheat Sheet

    Manner is how you deliver your speech. It will include anything that enhances you presentation and makes it more engaging: the tone and volume of your voice, how quickly you speak, hand gestures, eye contact, your stance, and how you use your notes (always use palm cards - NEVER an A4 sheet of paper!). Method: How you organise it.

  2. How to Write a Negative Debate Speech

    In a debate, both sides write constructive speeches that cover the topic of the debate. Whatever the topic of the debate is, there will be a positive and negative side; this does not refer to the attitude of the speakers, but to the content of their position. The team or individual who takes the negative side of the ...

  3. How to Write a Debate Speech

    1. Understand how debates work. You will be given a debate topic - this is called a "resolution." Your team must take a stance either affirmative or negative to the resolution. Sometimes you will be given the stance, and sometimes you will be asked to take a position. You may be asked to stand affirmative or negative.


    es an item of legislation for debate by the chamber. It is called an authorship speech if given by a student affiliated with the school the legislation originated from. All author/sponsorship speeches are followed by a two-minute questioning period. The first negative speech also may have two minutes of questioning. Questioning

  5. 6 Easy Steps to Write a Debate Speech

    Step 3: Signposting. Signposting may seem annoying and unnecessary. If you're a word-enthusiast it can even seem like it's disrupting the flow of your otherwise smooth and lyrical speech. However, it's completely and totally necessary in the structure of a good debate. You may think that you've written the best and most easy-to-follow debate in ...

  6. Policy (CX) Debate Second Negative Rebuttal

    The Second Negative Rebuttal. This is the Second Negative Rebuttal, or 2NR. The 2NR is the single hardest speech in debate. The Negative has to be technical here, covering the 1AR and extending offense from the Negative Block. But at the same time, this is the Negative's final speech! They need to summarize the round and crystallize, while ...


    Second, the rule of law is necessary for any system of morality of exist in the first place. 125 Watson Street, PO Box 38, Ripon, WI 54971-0038 (920) 748-6206 • Emil Brunner clarifies: "In a state of anarchy, no justice is possible, since 'the devoutest of men cannot live in peace if his wicked neighbor does not so ...

  8. How to Prepare and Present a Debate Speech + Tips & Examples

    Use Vocal Variety and Tone. Vary your vocal tone and pace to add interest and emphasis to your speech. Use pauses and changes in pace to emphasize important points, and vary your volume to make your arguments more impactful. Use the Debate Speech Checklist. Here is a checklist that can help you evaluate your debate.

  9. The Essential Guide to Structuring Your Debate Speech

    3. Main Arguments: The Heart of Your Speech. Main arguments are the star of your speech. They serve as the backbone of your speech, providing the content that supports your position. While ...

  10. Complete Guide to Debating: How to Improve your Debating Skills

    A debate is a structured contest over an issue or policy. There are two sides - one supporting, one opposing. Benefits of debating include: Allowing you to think about aspects and perspectives you may not have considered. Encourages you to speak strategically. Improving public speaking skills. Learning how to create a persuasive argument.

  11. How to Write a Debate Speech

    Here is a standard debate speech format for a 20-15 minutes long debate: Opening Statements. Affirming Side: 5 minutes. Opposing Side: 5 minutes. Rebuttals (No New Arguments) Affirming Side: 3 minutes. Opposing Side: 3 minutes. Cross-Examination. Affirming Side to Opposing Side: 3 minutes.

  12. Lincoln-Douglas (LD) Debate First Negative Constructive (1NC)

    Following the Neg's cross-examination, the Neg gives their First Negative Constructive (also known as the "NC" or "1NC.". The speech is 7 minutes. Here's the Neg has two jobs - presenting their own case and answering the Aff's case. For their own case, in a traditional round the Neg will present their own Framework and their own ...

  13. PDF Debate 101

    06 DEBATE 101: Everything You Need to Know about Policy Debate: You Learned Here NATIONAL SPEECH DEBATE ASSOCIATION I. ARGUMENTS. Arguments are the building blocks of debate. Learning about making arguments the right way is the essence of being well spoken in any walk of life, whether it is in the classroom, the workplace or at the kitchen table.

  14. Debate Writing

    Following are the steps you can stick to for writing a debate speech that lets you stand out from the competition: 1. Understand the Debate. The first of many steps in debate writing is understanding its nature. Here, both teams will be given a topic, and they will choose an affirmative or negative stance. 2. Research the Topic Thoroughly

  15. Writing Your Debate: Affirmative and Negative Arguments

    Do you want to learn how to write effective and persuasive arguments for the affirmative side in a debate? Watch this video and discover the tips and tricks of the first speaker, who sets the tone ...

  16. How to Create a Debate Speech

    Open the Debate. Introduce the topic in the first paragraph then make a statement that clearly and specifically identifies the team's position -- in favor or against the motion or issue under debate. Define and explain any complex scientific or technological terms or processes your audience needs to understand the topic before stating if you ...

  17. How to Write a Winning Debate Speech

    1. Choose a Topic For Your Debate. Also called a resolution or a motion, the topic is sometimes chosen to debate. This is usually the case in a school activity to practice debating skills. The resolution or motion is usually centered around a true or false statement or a proposal to change the current situation.

  18. PDF LincolnDouglasDebateCaseOutline' Affirmative/Negative' (CircleOne)'

    (Optional)! Before!analyzing!my!contentions,!please!observe!the!following:!(An!observation!is!a!point!of!clarification!defining! the!parameters!of!the!debate ...


    Regardless of whether or not you are affirmative or negative, you can use the same outline when writing your case; the only real difference (besides the content of your arguments) will be the length, since it probably isn't strategic to have a six-minute negative case. 1. The first part of your case should contain a short introduction.

  20. How to Write a Debate Speech: 10 Steps

    Define your position: Clearly state your stance on the issue at hand. Your position should be strong, specific, and concise - bold statements will keep your audience engaged in the debate. 4. Develop your main arguments: Identify 2-3 compelling arguments supporting your position. These should form the backbone of your debate speech.

  21. PDF First Affirmative Speaker Template

    Today as first speaker I will be talking to you about (Write down the main heading/s of the point/s you will be talking about.) 5. This is wrong because (During the debate you will write a reason why that point is wrong.) 6. S/he also said that (Write down another point that was made onto your rebuttal card.) 7.

  22. 3 Ways to Write a Speech if You're Third Speaker

    1. Rebut the proposition's arguments by using a new and different angle for your argument. You should complement the work the first and second speakers have done, while keeping the argument fresh. You do not want your argument to get stale. 2. Defend negative arguments by using appropriate supporting examples.

  23. Debate Speech Maker

    Learn about debate terminology and structure. Find out how to use the debate speech maker and how to write 📝 a speech yourself! Check out our free debate maker online! Learn about debate terminology and structure. ... Opposition/a Negative - A team or speaker taking an opposing stance on the core topic. The opposition presents arguments ...

  24. How a Case Against Fox News Tore Apart a Media-Fighting Law Firm

    In a series of letters totaling nearly 60 pages, Mr. Clare and Ms. Locke said The New York Times was spreading falsehoods about them and their firm. They said the firm had not tried to get off the ...

  25. Virtual Reality and the 'Virtual Wall'

    The U.S.-Mexico border is one of the most politicized technological spaces in the country, with leaders in both political parties supporting massive spending on border security and the so-called "Virtual Wall." Yet we see little debate over the negative impacts for human rights or the civil liberties of those who...