The Presidential Information
Registration is free, though we recommend a $5 donation to Doctors without Borders.
Each candidate must provide a judge in order to compete. Please contact us if this is not feasible.
Topic areas will be announced the week before the tournament begins.
All candidates will compete in six preliminary rounds, approximately 15 minutes each.
The top four high school candidates qualify, earn travel stipends, and gain free room & board to the 2021 Coolidge Cup.
Rounds will follow a variation of the presidential debate format:
The Presidential Format
The moderator asks an opening question relating to the topic area. The question may range from requesting a holistic opinion on how to secure America’s future to specific inquiries about a current event. All references will be of common knowledge, but candidates who keep up with news will excel.
Each candidate has two minutes to give a leading statement regarding their position on the subject. Their views do not have to conflict, but they must argue that as President, they would address the problem better than the opposing candidate.
After the leading statements, candidates will share ten minutes to debate for the vote. The moderator may or may not interject with questions regarding the policies presented by each side. This portion is loosely structured and how candidates decide to allocate time is largely strategic.
Date & Time
The tournament will go from 12 – 6 p.m. CST on Saturday, September 26th. Preliminary rounds will end sooner, though all disqualified candidates will be encouraged to participate in the election process after the final round.
The first three preliminary rounds will be paired completely randomly. The following preliminary rounds will be power-matched, meaning that candidates with excelling records will be matched against others with the same (or similar) records and vice versa.
Moderators will judge the debate based on which candidate’s rhetoric and arguments best appeal to them. Moderators are encouraged to take minimal notes to emulate how the average person watches the presidential debates.
After the six preliminary rounds, there will be up to four elimination rounds composed of the highest performing debaters. All elimination rounds will have a three-moderator panel, except for the final round which will use an election process to determine the President.
1. Climate Change
2. COVID-19 & Reopening
3. Technology Regulation
4. Police Reform
5. Drug Use
6. LGBT Rights
Quarterfinals: Health Care
Semifinals: Foreign Policy