Election 2023: Did Chris Hipkins or Christopher Luxon win the Newshub leaders debate?

  • 27/09/2023

Pundits have had their say on who won the Newshub leaders debate. 

After National Party leader Christopher Luxon and Labour's Chris Hipkins were neck and neck during the first leaders' debate last week, commentators Newshub spoke to believe the latter had the slight upper hand on Wednesday night. 

"Chris Hipkins came on behaving like an Opposition leader," said pundit Josie Pagani, a former Labour candidate. "He had swagger, he was punching, he was holding Christopher Luxon to account - so he did what he needed to do."

"Christopher Luxon also did what he needed to do which was to be almost statesmanlike, a little bit sensible - even just slightly ponderous at times. He looked like a Prime Minister.  

"I think Chippy (Hipkins) got the hits on the night but they both did what they needed to do." 

The Hui host Julian Wilcox believed Hipkins won the debate. 

"They evened out at the end but I think this is what people were potentially looking for from Chris Hipkins," Wilcox said. 

Janet Wilson, a political commentator and former National leader Judith Collins' ex-chief press secretary, also thought it was "definitely" Hipkins' night. 

"He was really fast out of the gates, he went into attack mode very quickly and early - and rightly so." 

Watch the full video for more.