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Hillsdale College Debate team. Andrew Dykstal | Courtesy

Sophomore Hannah Johnson and freshman TJ Wilson made debate finals at Clarion Uni­versity in Penn­syl­vania on Oct. 21 – 22.

Johnson won second place debater and debate speaker in the open division, facing a debater from Central Michigan Uni­versity in the final round.

Johnson argued against Supreme Court decision Utah v. Strieff, which allows ille­gally obtained evi­dence to be used in court.

The current decision opens the door for police to erase their Fourth Amendment vio­la­tions, Johnson said.

Wilson won second place debater and first place debate speaker in the novice division. He pro­posed police be required to obtain approval from their local gov­ern­ments and com­mu­nities to obtain mil­itary surplus weapons.

Johnson and Wilson both went unde­feated in pre­lim­inary rounds.

Sophomore Henrey Deese won fourth place debater and freshman Jadon Buzzard won fifth place debater in the open division.

In the novice division, freshman Carl Miller won third debater and second speaker, freshman Dan Grif­ferty won fourth debater and third speaker, and freshman Justin Politzer won fifth debater and fifth speaker.

Johnson defeated her final round opponent in a pre­lim­inary round where she had to defend the president’s power to pardon people.

Buzzard faced an opponent who argued that the federal gov­ernment should abolish all police in the United States.

Deese said the team bonded a lot during the com­pe­tition.

“We just had a great time,” Deese said. “We spent a lot of time together since the tour­nament was short on both days. Nobody slept on either of the van rides because we were just talking the entire time.”

  • Jen­nifer Melfi

    Nice work by com­petitors and glad the article went into some detail about the argu­ments and content. Good debators always have to play the other side of the card as well, inter­esting that none of this cane out in the text.