Jeremy Paxman and Alastair Stewart agreed to disagree at a sold-out and often boisterous RTS Legends' lunch.
The two seasoned broadcasters offered different perspectives on the recent general election to their interviewer, Media Show presenter Steve Hewlett.
"Monumentally dull" was the verdict of the erstwhile Newsnight attack dog on the campaign in which pollsters, pundits and politicians were all convinced would lead to another hung Parliament.
Paxman opined that TV networks had devoted so much attention to opinion polls because it was a "monumentally dull" campaign.
"This was a dull campaign. Of the two of them I would say Miliband had a slightly better campaign than Cameron, he got about more.
"But Cameron in the early stages gave people no reason to think there was any point in voting Conservative."
The ITN veteran begged to differ. He said he had "enjoyed" the run-up to May 7 despite claiming there was little difference in David Cameron and Ed Miliband's economic policies.
"You could barely put a postage stamp between the two of them.
" On the economy it was degrees of austerity they were arguing over...It was a managerial, American-style of choice."
The lack of headline-generating confrontations between politicians and members of the public, such as John Prescott famously punching a voter in 2001, suggested this was a very stage-managed election.
Said Stewart: "The Prescott punch was an extraordinary moment and great telly..."
But he disagreed with those commentators who insisted the 2015 election campaign was tightly controlled by the politicians' minders.
"Both Ed and Dave were allowed to mix with [ordinary people]..." said the ITV News presenter.
Both anchor men agreed the pollsters were guilty of misleading virtually everyone by consistently depicting stalemate between Conservative and Labour.
However, Stewart highlighted a local poll commissioned by ITV News which predicted the rout of Liberal Democrat MPs in the West Country.
[Alastair Stewart and Jeremy Paxman] He explained that pollsters ComRes successfully forecast the Tory takeover in the West of England.
"In that one report we predicted incredibly accurately what then unfolded," said Stewart.
"We did the research with a company we trusted and we got it right."
He added: "The polls said exactly the same thing in 1992. This time they changed the database and the methodology and still managed to screw it up.
"As a number of commentators have rightly observed, it is still that age old truth of 'The Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name.'"
"One of the lessons of this election is that you are an idiot if you believe opinion polls," thundered Paxman.
"They are not what we all fondly imagine – stout ladies with clipboards accosting people in the street...
"There are far too many young men who rarely see daylight making adjustments to the findings.
"It was clear from the start and should have been clear to anyone with two grey cells after the experience of the Scottish referendum, when many polls said it was too close to call, that polls were not to be taken as oracles of fact or trust...
"No doubt by the time the next election comes we will not have strung them up by their feet from every lamppost in Whitehall, which we should do...and there will be more opinion polls.
"We should pay as much attention to them as we shouldn't have paid to the ones this time.
"I am totally against opinion polls."
Stewart said: "The truth of the matter was that there was no other narrative in town so we fell foul of what turned out to be a wrong narrative...
"'I would rather earn more, keep more and not worry too much about the rest of society,' which is why in the final four days the majority of undecided voters voted Tory."
The RTS Legends' Lunch, General Election 2015: Did television come to the aid of the party?, was held at the London Hilton on May 19. The producers were Paul Jackson and Clive Jones
A full report of the event will be published in the June edition of Television
By Steve Clarke