[eDebate] Going to Gonzaga?

suniea at whitman.edu suniea
Thu Sep 14 15:13:19 CDT 2006

If you're going to Gonz, I thought you might want to know my judge 
philosophy since I'm in for 6 rounds.

Eric Suni
Judging for Whitman College

The ballot: My ballot is used to answer the question ?should the 
United States The United States Supreme Court should overrule The 
United States Supreme Court should overrule one or more of the 
following decisions: Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Ex parte Quirin, U.S. 
v. Morrison, Milliken v. Bradley?? To answer that question, I will 
ask ?is the topical plan better than the status quo or an alternative 
policy option competitive with the plan?? For me a policy option is 
one that relies on governmental fiat.

This is not up for debate. If your arguments do not disprove that the 
plan would be better than the status quo or a counterplan, then they 
may be very interesting or compelling, but in terms of my ballot, they 
are a complete non-sequitur. This also applies to any K that attempts 
to garner uniqueness through an alternative that is not the status quo 
or a policy using governmental fiat.

My only exception to this is if both teams agree that the framework for 
the debate should be something different, in which case I will judge 
their competing arguments and framework claims to the best of my 

Topicality: I?ve always leaned aff on topicality issues. If you?re 
trying to convince me that a very middle of the road aff (CAF? or 
permits on the energy topic; IPR or currency on China) isn?t topical, 
you?re probably going to lose. However, I will have no hesitation 
voting for T against cases that are either blatantly non-topical or 
assume plan mechanisms that usurp core negative ground (like affs last 
year that offered China an incentive). In most T debates, I find 
evidence to be much less compelling than clearly articulated arguments 
about what ground is lost and why that ground is vital to the neg.

DAs: Always be reading disads.

CPs: I like almost all CPs with a few exceptions: consultation CPs, 
utopian CPs (anarchy, for example), delay CPs. I?m not totally biased 
against these, and I understand that especially early in the year they 
can be the negative?s fallback, but I don?t like these arguments 
much and will lean slightly aff on theory questions about their 
legitimacy (note: this does not mean you should automatically go for 
?consult bad? if you?re aff?see section on theory).

Ks: Mostly explained by section on the ballot above. I?m not totally 
unwilling to listen to ?critical? arguments, however. I?m 
definitely receptive to using link arguments about epistemology as 
indicts of affirmative evidence (eg, your terror talk cards indict the 
truth of the 1AC terrorism advantage), I just won?t vote for an 
alternative and you?ll have a hard time winning uniqueness for most 
of those arguments, so you?ll still need some other external offense.

Theory: I generally lean negative on theory issues. I think most 1ARs 
would be better spent making strategic choices and reading more ev on 
the substance of the debate than trying to keep theory alive. However, 
I evaluate theory args in an offense/defense paradigm, so if the neg 
isn?t making offensive arguments to justify what they?re doing, you 
probably should keep theory alive. Long story short: Though hesitant, 
I?ll vote on theory but would much prefer (and will give much higher 
speaker points) to teams that go for substance.

Pet peeves: People who are mean to other debaters, people who steal 
prep, people who ask to go to the bathroom before they give their 
speech. I?m sure I?ll add to this list as time goes on.

Will earn you extra speaker points: ad homs about the Denver Broncos, 
funny jokes referring to most classic action films (think Die Hard or 
T2) or classic comedy films (think Tommy Boy and Billy Madison). Please 
do not try force jokes about these issues; bad jokes get you lower 
speaker points.

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