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2024 Debate Recap

Posted: Saturday, January 13, 2024 - 8:43 PM

Repealing a section of the Communications Decency Act and increasing fiscal redistribution were two of the topics argued at the 2024 Debate State Tournament – the 123rd edition and longest-running event of the Minnesota State High School League.

Bella Adams of St. Croix Preparatory Academy claimed her first title in the Lincoln-Douglas competition. She defeated Aditi Jha of Edina 4-3 in the final round.

Adams’ argument against the United States reducing its presence in the West Asia-North African region followed nine rounds of debate conducted over two days.

The results of eight rounds of debate proved that Max Ulven and Kiernan Baxter-Kauf of St. Paul Central were the best policy debaters. Ulven and Baxter-Kauf argued for the federal government substantially increasing fiscal redistribution through a federal job guarantee, expanding social security and/or providing a basic income, as they defeated Noah Winters and Sofia Burgess of Minneapolis South 7-0.

This was the first championship for Ulven and Baxter-Kauf.

Zellie Olson and Eva Redmond of Blake took top honors in Public Forum. Their victory came after nine rounds and they won 6-1 with the negative argument over teammates Kaylee Chen and Ruhi Kurdikar. Olson and Redmond argued against the United State repealing Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

Olson and Redmond placed second to teammates Elizabeth Terveen and Sofia Perri in 2023. Blake teams have now claimed the past five Public Forum championships.

Devarsh Borah of Edina won his first title in Congressional debate. The win was an improvement on last year’s sixth-place showing.

Congressional is a mock legislative assembly competition where students draft bills (proposed laws) and resolutions (position statements). Their peers then debate the legislation and vote whether or not to pass it into law. There were six rounds of Congressional debate, concluding with two Super Sessions on Saturday afternoon.

The Policy debate portion of the tournament has been conducted since 1902 and the Lincoln-Douglas portion of the tournament, which was an invitational event from 1986 through 1989, was added to the tournament in 1990. Public Forum was introduced in 2013 and Congressional was added in 2018.

Complete results are available at  

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