Video Lecture - Roles of Speakers - the Whip Speakers

Whip Speakers

I explain the role of the Whip Speakers in this format. These are the speakers who speak last in both teams, and I talk about them together since their roles are very similar. There are 3 main responsibilities, to Summarize and Defend your Case, Summarize and Prioritize issues in the debate and lastly Analyze and Rebut key issues.

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Questions and Answers on the Role of the Whip Speaker
Activities in Class or Training Exercises
Example of this Role

Brief Notes on this Lecture

Whip speakers are the last constructive speakers in the Asian Parliamentary format. Constructive speakers are those who build up arguments and clash points in the debate. Although whip speakers don't usually present new arguments (the Opposition Whip speaker is forbidden from doing this and it's too late in the debate for any new arguments to make a huge impact anyway) they can present new rebuttals, examples, analysis and defense of arguments that have already been made. They do this by doing the following

A) Briefly summarize and defend your case

  • It's important at the start of the speech to spend a minute or less to emphasize the points made by your team. This reminds the audience what the contribution of your team is and gives you a context from which to make your rebutalls and analysis. It will be easier to compare the other team's arguments to yours if you briefly summarize them first.

B) Summarize and prioritize the most important arguments or issues in the debate.

  • There will be many arguments and rebuttals flying around in the debate. You need to identify the main themes or major arguments that are dominating the debate or that you feel are important. This part is really important, you cannot talk about everything that has been said so you will have to choose. Choosing ideas that are not important will make the rest of your speech redundant. Be objective when deciding what the clash points are and be fair to the other team.

C) Rebut and analyze the arguments or issues and say why your team has done better on all of them, most of them or on the most important ones

  • This is the largest part of your speech. Once you have identified the major issues, go through and rebut all of them. Compare them to arguments your team has made and show why yours are better. 

Don't present new arguments, but you can present new analysis, new examples, new rebuttals and give support for arguments that your teammates have already made in the debate