Houston Matters

What Advice Would Houston Debaters Have For The Presidential Candidates?

As Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump prepare to square off in the first general election presidential debate, a local debate coach and some debate team members share thoughts on the art of debating.

high school debate, debate
(L-R): Rice University speech and debate team member Vera Ranneft, Richard Garner, interim director on the Policy Speech and Debate Team at the University of Houston, and Dikla Taylor, a member of the debate team at Lamar High School.

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On Monday night, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will square off in the first general election presidential debate of 2016. And media outlets, including NPR, are seeking out professional political analysts and pundits to share how they would prepare the candidates. Well, we here at Houston Matters thought we’d go another way: we turn to some high school and college debate students and coaches to learn how the debates they do work, how they differ from the sorts of political debates that we see on TV, and, yes, we give them a chance to advise the candidates.

We talk with Richard Garner, interim director on the Policy Speech and Debate Team at the University of Houston, Rice University speech and debate team member Vera Ranneft, and Dikla Taylor, a member of the debate team at Lamar High School.

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