Picking the Best Card- Politics Uniqueness

One topic that I have been involved in a lot of debates about is what makes the best politics uniqueness card. Is it better to dominantly control uniqueness with a “lost will pass with 97 votes in the senate” card, to have a more brinkish card “Lost will pass with 1 vote to spare now” or to have a speculative card ” there is a 75% chance that lost will pass” that eschews vote counts all together? This is by no means an exhaustive list of the kind of cards you could have, and each one has certain merits in regard to link uniqueness, degree of link etc.

Below I have taken some uniqueness cards from the NDT on the financial reform disad read by various squads. Some of them fall into the above categories. Think about what the reasons are one card would help you in the 2NC more than others, one reason few people consider being “what if I need to kick this disad”. Dates should be given marginal if any importance due to the length of the tournament.


(David Wessel, 3/20/10, ” Politics continues to threaten finance reform “, http://www.poconorecord.com/ apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/ 20100321/NEWS04/3210314/-1/ NEWSMAP)

The details illustrated that on financial reform, if not on much else, Democrats are closing in on a consensus. On key points, Mr. Dodd is moving toward his House counterpart, Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank, who shepherded a bill through an unruly committee and the full House three months ago. The substance demonstrated the influence that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke are exerting. On nearly every big issue, Mr. Dodd is moving closer to their positions. The Fed isn’t sidelined, as Mr. Dodd initially proposed, but gets a central role in supervising big banks and the financial system. A mechanism, albeit clunky, is created so the Fed and Treasury can take over a big failing financial firm instead of choosing between bankruptcy (Lehman) or bailout (American International Group). Banks can’t shop for the softest regulator. Regulators get lots of discretion, flexibility and authority to restrain financial firms of all sorts. An agency largely independent of bank regulators is created to regulate consumer finance. All that lifts the odds that President Barack Obama will mark the third anniversary of the onset of the crisis in August by signing a bill that makes the biggest changes to U.S. financial regulation since the 1930s. Mr. Dodd plans to push a bill through committee on a party-line vote before Congress breaks for two weeks on March 26, and then try — again — to cut a deal with enough Republicans to get a bill through the full Senate this summer. Without Republican partners, Mr. Dodd had to move left; to get the Republican votes he needs on the Senate floor, he’ll have to move right. Like so much else in Washington these days, though, the fate of financial regulation is linked to the fate of health-care legislation. If that fails and already bitter partisan bickering intensifies, Republicans are more likely to stick to a “just say no” strategy. If a health-care bill passes, financial regulation is more likely to pass, too. “The politics are different than health care,” says Douglas Elliott, a former investment banker now at the Brookings Institution think tank. “The public really wants something to get done, though they don’t know what. And they hate bankers. That’ll make it harder for Republicans to filibuster.”


Seib 3/22/10 (Christine, Times Online, “Obama goes into battle for Wall Street reform,”


President Obama has promised to use every tool at his disposal to reform Wall Street, despite what he said was an “army of lobbyists already arm-twisting members … to reject these reforms”. Although a vital healthcare vote was scheduled for yesterday, the President devoted his weekly radio address on Saturday to the financial reform Bill, which he said was essential. Senators will today begin thrashing out legislation to overhaul the US financial system as the Senate Banking Committee starts a week of meetings on a draft financial reform Bill. Republicans on the committee refuse to support the draft Bill created by Senator Christopher Dodd, the Democrat committee chairman. President Obama is particularly keen to see creation of a new consumer financial protection agency, a proposal that Republicans have criticised as creating further bureaucracy and that the financial industry has fought hard against, most recently with a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign. US moves forward on financial reform Ben Bernanke, the Fed Chairman, also urged the Senate Banking Committee to support the proposed reforms. On Saturday he said that the existence of “too big to fail” companies was pernicious and a barrier to competition. “It is unconscionable that the fate of the world economy should be so closely tied to the fortunes of a relatively small number of giant financial firms,” he said. Timothy Geithner, the Treasury Secretary, will take up the argument for Senator Dodd’s bill today, when he is scheduled to address the American Enterprise Institute on the legislation. Senator Dodd created the Bill alone after he failed, despite months of discussion, to come up with a bill in partnership with Senator Richard Shelby, the senior Republican on the committee. The Republicans have filed about 400 amendments to the draft legislation. Both parties have agreed that reform is needed to prevent a repeat of the financial crisis, but Republicans are opposed to key elements in the draft Bill. They would prefer that consumer protection powers be given to existing regulators rather than create a new protection agency. The Republicans disagree over the need for a $50 billion fund that banks would contribute to in case regulators needed money to liquidate a failing company. And a number of committee members are unsure about the President’s so-called Volcker rule, which would outlaw proprietary trading by banks. Senator Dodd is under pressure from the White House to get his Bill passed. The President set out his plans last June for the biggest overhaul of US financial regulation since the Great Depression.


The Boston Globe 3-16-10

Holding out hope for a bipartisan deal with Republicans, Senate Banking Committee chairman Christopher Dodd introduced a far-reaching bill yesterday to overhaul the nation’s financial regulatory system. On nearly all of the key issues, the measure takes a relatively tough line with financial firms. A new consumer protection agency, for instance, would have the authority to write and enforce rules that would apply to banks with more than $10 billion in assets, as well as mortgage companies, credit card issuers, and other large nonbank lenders – a broader scope than Republicans have been willing to grant. Dodd’s bill also would give shareholders of public companies more say on executive pay and in nominating directors, an idea that has faced fierce opposition from Republicans and many financial firms. “Our regulatory structure, constructed in a piecemeal fashion over many decades, remains hopelessly inadequate,” said Dodd, a Democrat from Connecticut, at a news conference. “There hasn’t been financial reform on the scale that I’m proposing this afternoon since the 1930s.” The measure also adopts the “Volcker Rule,” a proposal from the Obama administration that would require regulators to prohibit banks from investing in or owning hedge funds and private equity funds. This idea has been opposed by Wall Street. The bill also extends federal regulation to new corners of the financial system. Credit-rating agencies such as Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s would be supervised by a new office in the Securities and Exchange Commission and would be subject to regulatory action and private lawsuits for the first time. Trading in derivatives would be regulated and some trades publicly reported for the first time. Hedge funds with more than $100 million in assets would be required to register with the SEC and to disclose financial information to regulators. President Obama said in a statement that the proposal would provide a foundation for strengthening the nation’s financial system. “As the bill moves forward, I will take every opportunity to work with chairman Dodd and his colleagues to strengthen the bill and will fight against efforts to weaken it,” he said. “We will stand firm against any attempt by the financial sector to avoid their responsibilities: In any future crisis the big financial companies must pay, not taxpayers.” Despite the inclusion of proposals aimed at pleasing Democrats, Dodd’s staff labored throughout the weekend to piece together language that would also preserve the possibility of winning GOP support. “I don’t have standing with me today bipartisan support at this podium,” Dodd said. But he noted that “at any stage in the development of a bill, you can develop that consensus.” For instance, Dodd proposed housing a new consumer regulator in the Federal Reserve, a compromise that has garnered Republican support but is anathema to liberal Democrats and consumer advocates who argue that the Fed failed miserably in protecting consumers in recent years. Such groups have insisted on an independent, standalone agency such as one the Obama administration proposed and the House included in its version of reform legislation passed in December. The key supporter of that agency, however, praised Dodd’s overall proposal. “Despite the banks’ ferocious lobbying for business as usual, chairman Dodd took an important step today by advancing new laws to prevent the next crisis,” Elizabeth Warren, a Harvard law professor who is chairwoman of the Congressional Oversight Panel that oversees the Troubled Asset Relief Program, said in a statement. Warren developed the idea of a standalone consumer agency. “We’re now heading toward a series of votes in which the choice will be clear: families or banks,” she said. Dodd said his bill incorporated many of the compromises he reached in recent weeks with Senator Bob Corker, a Republican from Tennessee, with whom he had been negotiating before revealing last week he would forge ahead alone. Still, he acknowledged that key elements will remain controversial.


Matthew Rusling, 3/19/2010 (http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/indepth/2010-03/19/c_13217313.htm )

– U.S. Democratic Senator Christopher Dodd Monday unveiled a bill aimed at overhauling the country’s banking system to avoid the risk of another financial crisis.

In spite of a number of controversial provisions within the bill, reform is likely to pass, as many blame the nation’s banking sector for sparking the worst recession since the 1930s, experts said.

Dodd, the bill’s sponsor, said Monday on CBS’ “Early Show” that the legislation would stop banks from becoming “too big to fail” — a catchphrase often used to describe financial institutions whose failure could spark widespread economic calamity.


Kaer 3/19 “summers criticizes bank lobbying on Reg Reform,” lexis

Though he did not specifically referto Summers, Sen. Bob Corker, who spoke later at the same event, said mixed messages from the White House have some wondering whether the administration really wants a bill. “The only question I have,” he said, is “do they want a bill or an issue?”

The Tennessee Republican credited the Treasury Department for working constructively with Capitol Hill toward a compromise, but he said the “characters” at the department are so divided over what they want in a bill, it isn’t clear what they could support.

“The Treasury Department is made up of lots of different characters inside of it that actually have 180-degree different views on lots of things,” Corker said. “It’s not homogeneous, either. As a matter of fact,I’ll bet you couldn’t get Treasury to agree.”

Corker, who had hoped to reach a bipartisan reform bill deal with Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd, said Senate Republicans still want to pass a bill, but he predicted a compromise would not be reached until after a planned committee vote next week.

“This next week in essence it’s going to be a partisan markup,” Corker said. “The goal is to get the bill out of committee and then make arrangements to come up with a bipartisan bill, hopefully by the time the bill goes to the floor.”

2 thoughts on “Picking the Best Card- Politics Uniqueness

  1. aakash gupta

    Filter 1: The evidence you have
    Filter 2: Your Judge, how likely are they to vote on “we control uniqueness so a risk of a link…”
    Filter 3: Strength of your link
    Filter 4: if the team is going to go for link threshold arguments
    Too often do debaters stick with one (set of) card(s) in all circumstances.

    My general opinion is that your uniqueness internal link should be specific to your link. Take the example of the Afghanistan DA people were reading; it didn’t make sense because the plan effected the wrong people. (Caveat: I kind of hate Politics DAs; the quality of this evidence illustrates why.)

    Now, the cards–
    A is decent but cites a bunch of reasons irrelevant to the plan why it would past and gives way too much to the aff on the ‘healthcare first’ argument

    B does not really conclude political capital will cause it to pass, but can be spun as political capital key – obama is pulling the strings with Dodd to compromise. this makes it marginally more useful since winning a political capital link is not as difficult in many cases.

    C is generally not a very good card besides citing an obama speech that he will spend political capital on reform (duh). 2nc at best. compromises key, sure, but will they be done in the squo?

    D does not contain a warrant about why, but makes the right argument — probably 2nc uniqueness

    E breaks explicitly from anything to do with the plan and doesn’t say it will pass – it says that partisanship about this issue matters

    None of this evidence is particularly great. Since the A card actually cites momentum but is not overly conclusive in its language, it’s probably best as the uniqueness card. Since B makes claims about political capital, it’s probably best as the internal link card. Filter 1 prevails in the absence of anything else. Regular ‘will pass’ cards with a ‘pc key’ card.

    Better card:
    Hall, 3/24 (Michael, McClatchy News Service, “Odds are brightening for financial regulation bill to pass,” Factiva)

    WASHINGTON — With health care legislation all but completed, the Obama administration and key Democratic lawmakers pledged Wednesday that passage this year of a sweeping revamp of financial regulation is now the next legislative priority.

    “This is now the number one issue that the American public is going to be focusing on,” House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., told reporters after a strategy session at the White House.

    Frank’s committee passed a sweeping rewrite of the rules in December but has been waiting for the Senate to act. The Senate Banking Committee, on a party-line vote without amendments, passed on Monday a 1,336-page bill drafted by Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Ct. Dodd, too, was at the White House session Wednesday.

    Both the House and Senate regulatory bills would create new authority to break apart giant financial firms whose failure poses risk to the broader U.S. and global economy. A fund would be created, collected from fees on banks, to extinguish banks that posed such a risk.

    The legislation also would create a Consumer Financial Protection Agency to police consumer credit products such as mortgages, credit cards, payday loans and the like. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and banks hope that Republicans can water down this aspect of the bill, the main obstacle to bipartisan support.

    Although Senate Republicans voted en masse against the bill in committee, key GOP senators such as New Hampshire’s Judd Gregg and Tennessee’s Bob Corker said Wednesday that they expect a regulatory overhaul to pass this year. Earlier, Corker had said that senators had been close to a bipartisan compromise bill; at one point recently, Corker described the two sides as “95 percent there.”

    White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs was optimistic Wednesday that a meaningful rewrite can get done this year without the rancor that accompanied the health care debate.

    “Well, I think, quite frankly, I think you’ve seen comments today from Sen. Corker saying that he believes there will be Republicans that do support financial reform,” said Gibbs., who added that the Democratic committee chairmen restated their commitment during the White House visit to enacting the law this year. “I think the president expects that we will finish financial reform in the next couple of months, certainly by the time we mark the second anniversary of the financial collapse in the early fall.”

    While many conservative Americans are upset about changes to the health care system, when it comes to finance, the boiling anger is targeted at the banks, not at efforts to regulate them.

    “The public really wants something to be done. And they hate bankers,” said Douglas Elliott, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, a center-left policy research group. “These two things make it much less likely that Republicans would filibuster on this.”

    Asked if President Barack Obama will meet with Republicans to sway their vote, Gibbs skirted a direct answer but suggested that such efforts have been under way.

    “I think the president has been very hands-on regarding financial reform, and I think it is one of the president’s top priorities now, understanding, as I’ve said many times, that we need strong rules going forward to prevent the type of collapse we saw in the fall of 2008,” the White House spokesman said.

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