SPAIN: Corrida for Two

A parliamentary battle reawakens a young democracy

Every radio, it seemed, was tuned to the same station. In cafés and shops from Bilbao to Barcelona last week, Spanards listened intently to a heated parlamentary discussion broadcast live from the Cortes. The debate concerned the faltering policies of Conservative Premier Adolfo Suárez. More significantly, for the first time since Generalissimo Francisco Franco's "40 years of silence" came to an end, Spain was experiencing a vigorous public debate by its politicians—and the country reveled in it.

The political mano a mano pitted Suárez, 47,...

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