Calvin Coolidge Constitution Day Idaho Invitational

The Calvin Coolidge Presidential Foundation is proud to announce the 2nd Annual Calvin Coolidge Constitution Day Idaho Invitational, a one-day tournament that will be held on Saturday, September 30 at the Wood River High School in Hailey, Idaho.

Tournament registration is free, and lunch is provided. The tournament is open to high school students from all schools and leagues. We will have a Novice division and a Varsity division. Trophies will be awarded to top finishers in each division. The top 5 varsity finishers will each receive an invitation to the 2024 Coolidge Cup, which also includes a monetary stipend that will be awarded in June 2024. Those stipends are $1,000 for 1st place; $750 for 2nd place; $650 for 3rd place; and $450 for 4th and 5th places.

Tournament details are below:

Date:       Saturday, September 30, 2023
Time:       All day (about 8:30am to 5:30pm)
Format:     1v1 Coolidge Debate Format
Divisions:  Varsity and Novice
Location:   Wood River High School & Community Center
            1250 Fox Acres Dr, Hailey, ID 83333
            (For morning arrival: high school cafeteria)
Eligible:   All high school students grades 9-12
Cost:       Registration is free
Register:   Register below by Monday, September 25 at 11:59pm MT
Attire:     Business Professional 
Judges:     Volunteer citizen judges are provided;
            schools have no requirement to provide judges
Schedule:   Schedule for the Day (PDF)
Seminar:    Join us on Zoom on Thursday, Sep 14th @7pm MT.
            for a seminar with Coolidge Debate Fellow 
            Dr. Ben Voth explaining the Coolidge debate 
            style and format. Link to recording here.
            Passcode: n^3G$k*Y



The resolution for the tournament is Resolved: The United States should adopt the balanced budget amendment known as Senate Joint Resolution 13.

Note: It is the intent of this tournament to have students debate the particular balanced budget amendment known as Senate Joint Resolution 13, that has been proposed by Senator Mike Lee. Should the name or number of that proposal be changed by Congress in the weeks leading up to the tournament, we ask students to remain focused on the intended topic (the idea of a balanced budget amendment).

Research Brief

The research brief can be downloaded here. The purpose of the brief is to help you get started on your case preparation. You are welcome and encouraged to use the brief as a starting point and build upon it by doing your own research and case-writing. You are not limited to the arguments and sources in the brief.

Tournament Structure

This is a one-day tournament with both Varsity and Novice divisions. We will have four preliminary rounds, and then the top two students will compete in a championship round (which will take place in the auditorium, and to which all students, parents, and judges are invited to come and watch). For preliminary rounds, competitors will be paired randomly for round one, and power-paired thereafter.

Trophies will be awarded to the Top 8 Novice debaters and the Top 8 Varsity debaters. The top 5 varsity finishers will each receive an invitation to the 2024 Coolidge Cup, which is a national invitational speech and debate tournament sponsored by the Calvin Coolidge Presidential Foundation and held in President Coolidge’s historic hometown of Plymouth, Vermont, the week of the Fourth of July. Learn more about the Coolidge Cup here. The Coolidge Cup invitations also include a monetary prize.

Format and Style

Students will compete in the Coolidge 1v1 Debate Format. This is the same format that is used at the Coolidge Cup. If you are new to debating in this format, we highly recommend you review our Debate Guide, which provides information about this particular format, style, and rules. Consistent with Coolidge Debate, this tournament will recruit and use volunteer citizen judges. Schools are not required to provide judges for this tournament.


If you have any questions about the tournament, the Coolidge Cup, or about judging, please contact Coolidge Foundation Debate Director Jared Rhoads (


Registration for the Sep 30th tournament is now closed.