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Speech & Debate
Contact Info

Speech & Debate Director:
Jana Riggins

Email:
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Department Phone:
512-471-5883

Department Fax:
512-232-1499

State Champions

District II Extemp Topics

Informative Speaking Prelims

1. How are religious minority groups in the Philippines attempting to gain a political voice in their nation?

2. How are hurricane Harvey recovery efforts progressing in Texas coastal regions?

3. Why hasn’t the White House and President Trump disavowed Vladimir Putin?

4. What steps has President Trump taken to reinvigorate the U.S. coal industry?

5. What are the principal causes of political unrest in El Salvador?

6. What is President Trump’s plan to address the opioid epidemic?

7. How has Pope Francis changed the Catholic Church in his five years as Pope?

8. What does the latest data suggest about the U.S. high school dropout rate nationwide?

9. What are the recent developments in the Korean peace process?

10. What are some of the greatest achievements of Professor Stephen Hawking?

11. What actions has the United States taken to help end the Syrian civil war?

12. How is privatization altering U.S. space exploration objectives?

13. What evidence is there to blame Russia for the chemical attack against Sergei and Yulia Skripal?

14. What is the relationship between the stock market and general U.S. economic conditions?

15. Why is Jordan seeking closer diplomatic ties with Turkey?

16. What are Cyril Ramaohosa’s plans to change South Africa?

17. As White House Chief of Staff, what are John Kelly’s most pressing challenges?

18. What has the Mueller investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election uncovered?

19. What do the latest election results in Italy reveal about the nation’s current political disposition?

20. What is the impact in our state of the Texas Senate Bill 4, the “sanctuary cities” bill?

Informative Speaking Finals

1. What are the latest details related to the investigation of exploding packages in Austin?

2. What factors are contributing to escalating diplomatic tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran?

3. How have U.S. Congressional leaders responded to the voices of the Walkout Movement?

4. Why does violence and rebellion continue in the Democratic Republic of the Congo?

5. Who are President Trump’s most outspoken opponents in Congress?

6. What is the relationship between climate change and water supplies in sub-Saharan Africa?

7. What does the Cambridge Analytica scandal reveal about Facebook information security?

8. What are the allegations facing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu?

9. Why was Rex Tillerson replaced as Secretary of State?

10. Who are the frontrunners in Mexico’s presidential race?

11. How is the leadership style of Donald Trump different from that of other presidents?

12. What steps are being taken to ensure the security of the 2018 elections?

13. Why did President Trump choose to exempt some nations from steel tariffs?

14. How has the relationship between the U.S. and China changed under the Trump administration’s
leadership?

15. What was the basis for the dismissal of FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe?

16. What issues face German Chancellor Angela Merkel as she begins her fourth term in office?

17. How are Venezuela’s leaders responding to the nation’s economic woes?

18. What is the status of SpaceX’s rocket program?

19. Why has the United Kingdom expelled Russian diplomats?

20. Why did Pennsylvania redraw their congressional districts?

Persuasive Speaking Prelims

1. Can Austin or Dallas woo Amazon to build its second headquarters in the Lone Star State?

2. Are Myanmar’s leaders suppressing journalism in their nation?

3. Does the National Rifle Association have extensive influence over decision-making in Congress?

4. Is sectarianism a root cause of political unrest in the Middle East?

5. Are the days of the two-party system’s political dominance in the United States nearing an end?

6. Does the “Bathroom Bill” have a future in the next Texas legislative session?

7. Will the Trump administration get a border wall built on the US/Mexico border?

8. Are NATO countries paying their fair share?

9. Is the U.S. federal government taking sufficient action to ensure the safety of public school students?

10. Can China become a world leader in the development of Artificial Intelligence?

11. Is the U.S. power grid vulnerable to an extensive cyber-attack?

12. Should the government do more to address the mental health crisis in America?

13. Does Nikki Haley have a vital role on President Trump’s foreign policy team?

14. Is Mexico winning the war against drug cartels?

15. Is President Trump receiving sound economic guidance from his leading advisors?

16. Should there be a civilian ban on military-style assault weapons?

17. Is Puerto Rico making progress in its hurricane recovery efforts?

18. Are South Africa’s leaders still dealing with lingering effects of apartheid policies?

19. Is the wage gap between workers and CEOs in U.S. corporations a cause for concern?

20. Are radical right-wing political groups becoming increasingly more popular in Germany?

Persuasive Speaking Finals

1. Will the latest peace plan bring an end to fighting in South Sudan?

2. Are the effects of the #MeToo movement on society only temporary?

3. Can the U.S. advance a viable peace proposal for the Israelis and Palestinians?

4. Should Conor Lamb’s Pennsylvania election victory cause concern for the Republican Party?

5. Is China the leading target of President Trump’s proposed tariffs?

6. Will driverless automobiles add yet another risk to highway safety?

7. Is the American public being misled by inaccurate news reporting by overzealous journalists?

8. Does the United States face a major threat of cyber-attacks from Russia?

9. Is Colombia in the midst of a major political transition?

10. Would Texas reap economic benefits from development of a high-speed rail system?

11. Has increased reliance on computer technology resulted in a steady erosion of personal privacy?

12. Would a repeal of the Dodd-Frank Act be bad for U.S. consumers?

13. Is the likelihood of an independent Catalan Republic beginning to fade?

14. Will there be negative environmental impacts due to expanding offshore oil drilling?

15. Is global warming having a devastating effect on impoverished sub-Saharan African nations?

16. Is Mike Pompeo qualified to serve as U.S. Secretary of State?

17. Are major political changes looming on the horizon for Egypt?

18. Will fulfillment of Brexit erode the strength of the European Union?

19. Should special prosecutor Robert Mueller conclude his investigation?

20. Is political stability gradually becoming a reality in Afghanistan?