Friday, October 14, 2016

Debate Team Finishes in Semi Finals at Lewis and Clark Debate Tournament

Idaho State Debaters on the Lewis and Clark Trip, 2016
           On the weekend of October 8, 2016, Idaho State University debaters ended up as semi-finalists in a competition at Lewis and Clark College in British Parliamentary debate. Competing against schools such as Gonzaga and Seattle University, Bengal freshmen Nick Grunig and Nate Mortimer established their place at the podium with some of the best teams in the country.
Nick Grunig and Nate Mortimer
Their second time competing in the parliamentary format, Grunig and Mortimer broke into the semi-finals as the no. 6 seed after scoring an impressive 924 speaker points over the course of 6 preliminary rounds. The duo finished with a solid top 5 showing.
Nick Grunig
“I had no idea we were going to do as well as we did,” said Mortimer. “I knew Nick and I were going to do the best we could, but I had no idea. Especially against the competition, the competition was amazing.”
Mortimer led the ISU squad in the individual rankings with a 464 point performance that earned him the honor of being named as the 6th best speaker overall. Grunig’s performance backed up his teammate with an individual score of 460 points. A performance that placed him 16th out of 56 total competitors from the 28 teams in competition. 
Nate Mortimer
While the former Highland debaters were excelling in the open division, ISU’s Jonah Ruhter and Tristin Herrup-Wheeler accumulated a combined score of 879 points in the novice division, which resulted in a tie for the 8th spot. Although Ruhter and Herrup-Wheeler crafted a strong and consistent performance, they unfortunately missed the cut by just one spot. On the individual level, Herrup Wheeler placed 10th overall in speaker points by scoring 440 points, while Ruhter finished 2 spots behind his teammate with a score of 439. Cora Bidet and Mike Chen also represented ISU in the Senior Division.
Coming up next for the Bengals will be an exhibition style public debate which will debate whether or not we should continue to use the Electoral College to elect the President of the United States. The debate will be moderated by Sean Illing of  It will be held in the middle fork of the Salmon River Suites in the SUB on October 18th at 5:30 pm.  If you have any questions, please contact

Topics Debated at Lewis and Clark

  • THBT citizen-initiated referendum are harmful to the democratic process
  • THBT US should abolish mandatory minimum sentencing. 
  •  THBT the United States should make continued aid to Israel dependent upon a 2-state solution including a shared capital in Jerusalem.
  •  Resolved, The United States should abolish the electoral college.
  •  The international criminal court should indict Bashir al-Assad for war crimes
  •  TH should repeal the 2nd Amendment.

Open Division-28 Teams
Nick and Nate: Total Speaker Points-924, finished tied for 6th overall out of the 28 teams present.
1.       Round 1: 151 points, P2
2.       Round 2: 154 points, P2
3.       Round 3: 155 points, P3
4.       Round 4: 147 points, P4
5.       Round 5: 162 points, P1
6.       Round 6: 155 points, P3
Cora and Mike: Total Speaker Points-886, finished 24th overall out of the 28 teams present.
1.       Round 1: 143 points, p4
2.       Round 2: 151 points, P2
3.       Round 3: 146 points, P4
4.       Round 4: 155 points, P2
5.       Round 5: 147 points, P4
6.       Round 6: 144 points, P4
Novice Division- 16 Teams
Jonah and Tristan: Total Speaker Points-879, finished 9th overall out of 16 teams present.
1.       Round 1: 144 points, P2
2.       Round 2: 143 points, P4
3.       Round 3: 144 points, P4
4.       Round 4: 150 points, P2
5.       Round 5: 149 points, P3
6.       Round 6: 149 points, P2