Jul 26, 2010

Who won the debate?

Daily Media Wrap: Fair dinkum, last night was the only election debate of the campaign and it was filled with moving forwards, cheesy Aussie lingo and worms aplenty.

Amber Jamieson — Freelance journalist in New York

Amber Jamieson

Freelance journalist in New York

Last night was the only election debate of the campaign and it was filled with fair dinkums, which is the new moving forward, apparently. In case you missed it, you can read the entire transcript here, but let’s face it, it wasn’t the most thrilling testament to democracy.

Pre-debate, Michelle Grattan wrote in The Age about how important the leaders’ debate was for Abbott:

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119 thoughts on “Who won the debate?

  1. Oscar

    This may indeed have been “Tony Abbott’s best moment”. But it wasn’t nearly good enough.

    And what’s with all the wimpy commentators who are afraid to declare an opinion one way or another? Here’s mine:

    Gillard won unequivocally. Not surprising – she didn’t really have to do much other than turn up, stand there and let Abbott display the negativity for which he’s justly renowned.

    Question to Abbott: “What would you do about …”

    Answer from Abbott:”Well, aaahhh, I’ll, aaahhhh, tell you what I WONT do, aaahhh … ”

    Abbott’s a born opposition leader if ever I saw one. He has found his role in life and it would be a shame to take that away from him.

  2. leone

    Only rusted-on supporters would have bothered watching in the hope of seeing their man or woman beat the other side to a pulp. Who may or may not have ‘won’ is irrelevant because not one vote would have changed sides as a result of The Debate. I didn’t watch, couldn’t be bothered. I’ve decided who I’ll vote for and I didn’t want to sit through an hour full of spin and mantras about ‘pink batts and school halls’ and ‘moving forward’, because neither side gets my vote. I’m voting independent – again.

    Does anyone else think that delivery-wise Julia Gillard is sounding more and more like Maggie Thatcher these days? Same slow, measured delivery, same quiet, low voice. Julia sounded much better before the image makers started trying to change the way she speaks.

  3. skink

    I thought it was fairly clear who won


    he got a trophy and everything

    I mean, who can’t recognize a hollandaise sauce ?


  4. leone

    Nah, it wan’t hollandaise, I thought it was some sort of pink stuff with eggwhite in it, all soft and lacking any substance, just like the content of the debate.

    But what would I know? I was busy watching a rerun of my The West Wing dvds.

  5. David

    Why was it called a ‘debate’ ? A series of statements and answers to prepared questions by hand picked journalists was more akin to a party political broadcast.

  6. merlot64

    Less of a debate than an exercise in brand management….

  7. Bob Weis

    Who won the debate is a question that is answered by who you are and what you want.

    I wanted to see Phoney Tony lose his cool but what I saw was a measured reading of scripted remarks and a huge effort to pull in a natural tendency to be nasty while lying through a smiling mouth about almost everything.

    With Julia I saw a restrained performance by a person who could hear the lies and I assume thought the people watching would know or not be persuaded by name calling. I noticed Julia seemed confident of her facts and didn’t need to read.

    I am also prepared to emigrate if PT wins but it seems impossible to believe.

  8. skink

    I was impressed that The Oz and The Hun managed to spin it into an Abbott win purely on the basis that he wasn’t a total car crash and didn’t bark at the moon.

    every sane analyst, including some from the right like Sinodinos, called it for Gillard.

    Given that these debates are generally won by the Leader of the Opposition – even Latham – then the fact that Abbott’s failed to convince even his most one-eyed supporters should be viewed as terminal.

  9. Oscar


    Generally agree, except that Abbott’s campaign was already terminal, so perhaps the media are right to regard this as something of a reprieve for him.

    If he had performed as badly against Gillard as he did against Rudd, it would have been “all over red rover” for him – he probably wouldn’t have even lasted till the end of the week, let alone till the election.

    As things stand now, he will (probably) at least make it to the finish line. Then he can look forward to the “night of the long knives” that will inevitably follow.

  10. Orchardo

    My partner and I treated it like a job interview…

    – Tony Abbott just didn’t talk like he wanted the job – sounded very happy where he was.
    – Julia Gillard seemed a bit more together and more forthcoming with details, examples, etc.

    Very little mention of green issues, understandably given the lack of good policies on either side… Still a shame none of the media luminaries chose to ask about these issues though…

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