Hamilton Press - - FRONT PAGE -

It was hard to say who was the win­ner of the leader’s de­bate, be­tween Na­tional’s Bill English and Labour’s Jacinda Ardern, broad­cast on TV One. I say that be­cause there seemed to be more pre-de­bate talk about how host Mike Hosk­ing would man­age the de­bate, rather than how the two lead­ers would han­dle the ques­tions. Was Mr Hosk­ing a good choice for the job? TVNZ seem to think so and backed him de­spite pub­lic crit­i­cism. He got stuck into the prime min­is­ter about the state of the coun­try’s rivers while press­ing Jacinda Ardern hard on pol­icy de­tails. But it did ap­pear that Mr Hosk­ing was the cen­tral at­trac­tion when it should have been the lead­ers. It al­most had that game show feel about it. Could any­one else do a bet­ter job than Mr Hosk­ing? I would like to put for­ward the fol­low­ing can­di­dates: TVNZ po­lit­i­cal ed­i­tor Corin Dan; long­time broad­caster Pe­ter Wil­liams; Ra­dio NZ’s John Camp­bell, Susie Fer­gu­son, Guyon Espiner or Mi­hin­garangi Forbes. I’m not sure why TVNZ keeps de­fault­ing to Mr Hosk­ing.

Lawrence Gullery

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