Video: Glodt vs. Kolbeck on Amendment S (and Policy Debate Postdate!)

Lawyer vs. lawyer! What fun! Jason Glodt, the only lawyer in South Dakota who supports Amendment S, the crime victims bill of rights, went head to head with Ryan Kolbeck Thursday evening in Sioux Falls. Again, Cameraman Bruce Danielson produces the best video of the event:

Note that Glodt tries to portray his Amendment S as originating in the women’s rights movement of the 1970s and in criminal justice reforms advocated by the Reagan Administration. Glodt never mentions the real genesis of Amendment S, the vanity project of California billionaire Henry T. Nicholas, who has no known involvement with any feminist movements or the Reagan Administration. Henry T. Nicholas is simply funding political operatives around the country like Glodt to write his vanity bill into every state’s constitution.

Kolbeck notes the exclusive outside funding of Amendment S. He also co-opts Glodt’s attempt to brand Amendment S as part of some great political tradition by noting [at ~8:10 in the video] that South Dakota passed its current crime victims bill of rights in 1991, apparently in response to the concerns of the 1982 Reagan task force on crime victims. High school policy debaters will recognize and revel in this brilliant example of a postdate/inherency argument: affirmative cites old evidence calling for a solution, and negative responds with newer evidence showing that the status quo has already responded to exactly those concerns.

Also worth noting is that the Constitutional amendment called for by the 1982 task force was one sentence to be added to the Sixth Amendment: “Likewise, the victim, in every criminal prosecution shall have the right to be present and to be heard at all critical stages of judicial proceedings.” Amendment S goes far beyond that mild protection of the right to be present and heard; Amendment S asserts privacy rights that allow victims not to cooperate with law enforcement after accusing defendants of serious crimes.

Note also that Glodt’s attempt to cloak Amendment S in history doesn’t fit the facts of Henry T. Nicholas’s activism. Nicholas funded various tough-on-crime laws after he struck in rich in the dot-com boom in the late 1990s, but it appears that he didn’t push victims rights until 2008.

Amendment S isn’t part of the women’s rights movement or the Reagan revolution. It’s just Henry T. Nicholas’s vanity project, a legal mess that would put the rights of defendants—rights, as Kolbeck reminds us, enshrined by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution—in peril.

3 Responses to Video: Glodt vs. Kolbeck on Amendment S (and Policy Debate Postdate!)

  1. John Kennedy Claussen, Sr.

    Cory, thanks for the walk down memory lane with the high school debate inherency point, I love it!

    I am a little rusty on my high school debate theory, but isn’t it also fair to say that when Mr. Kolbeck says that if there is a problem with victims’ rights right now in South Dakota, that it should be dealt with in Pierre and not with a constitutional amendment like S, that such a point proves that M. Glodt’s claims are structural, but that a law and not a new constitutional amendment is warranted, if at all – assuming a course, that absent a new law a structural, policy, or attitudinal inherency could be identified so as to make any structural changes necessary or any resemblance of S necessary even, or even a need for a new executive order on the execution of current germane statutes, if that is what Mr. Kolbeck means in terms of “Pierre” instead, which itself would make any barrier definitely not structural (for an affirmative debater) rather policy or attitudinal at best, and thus it would fail the test or bar of a valid inherency?….;-)

    From an inherency standpoint, the S Amendment debate explains how inherency can have independent universes within a general problem or claimed problem and if the solvency is not found within the same universe then its solution becomes tangent at best to the real problem, if there is even a real problem to begin with that is…..

  2. Ah, Inherency!

    Aff can appeal to three kinds of Inherency: structural, attitudinal, and gap. Glodt cannot demonstrate any of them.

    1. Structural: quite the opposite of any law or institution saying, “Victims cannot assert rights in the criminal justice system,” our statutes include a “Crime Victims’ Act” that spells out rights for crime victims.
    2. Attitudinal: Glodt can’t show any attitude among legislators that opposes rights for crime victims. Had Henry T. Nicholas come to the Legislature and offered the chance to vote to help crime victims, such a proposal would likely have passed unanimously among legislators eager to look tough on crime and loving toward victims in the next election. The strongest reason Kolbeck gives for opposing this specific bill is that it actually takes help away from victims by spreading meager public resources too thin and on too trivial crimes.
    3. Gap: well, there isn’t a constitutional amendment, and Glodt argues crime victims need constitutional teeth. But Kolbeck can make a strong argument that the gap is pretty well filled by the existing statutory structure and by the attitude of lawmakers willing to fill any gap with further statutory action.

    Stock issues are a great framework for conducting real-world policy debates.

  3. John Kennedy Claussen, Sr.

    Cory, thanks for the primer refresher on inherency! I don’t recall “Gap,” I remember it as structural, attitudinal, and policy, but that has been 36+ years ago already for me. Once again, thanks for the run down!…