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Election debate draws a vocal crowd

by Vanessa Elley (she/her)

news writer


The University of Auckland Debating Society’s 2023 election debate drew a rowdy audience on February 28th, with a full house in the Fisher & Paykel Appliances Auditorium.


The debate featured representatives from the parties that polled over 1 per cent in the 2020 general election, and was hosted by Q&A’s Jack Tame.


There were three key issues to discuss: The economy, the environment and housing. Most representatives agreed that climate change and economic sustainability were a priority.


Auckland Central MP and Green representative, Chlöe Swarbrick, outlined a “mitigation and adaptation” based approach.


There were three key issues to discuss: The economy, the environment and housing. Most representatives agreed that climate change and economic sustainability were a priority. Auckland Central MP and Green representative, Chlöe Swarbrick, outlined a “mitigation and adaptation” based approach.


National representative, Chris Bishop, agreed.


“We do need to reduce our emissions, and we do need to adapt to what’s coming from the rest of the world.”, he said.


Throughout the debate audience members were eager to voice their thoughts, opinions and rebuttals to the politicians on the stage.


Last year’s mayoral debate set a precedent for crowd participation, with two eggs hurled at New Conservative representative, Ted Johnston, before the night was through.


While no eggs flew this time around, the atmosphere was still one of lively and heated debate. Heckling went both ways, with the audience unafraid to speak up and the politicians matching their energy.


A full recording of the live-streamed debate is available on the University of Auckland Debating Society’s Facebook page.

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