MEXICO CITY : Mexican First: Debate

Mexicans will tune in to their country's first presidential debate Thursday night. The three front-runners in a nine-candidate race will appear on prime-time radio and television, analyzing the state of the nation and proposing solutions, with time for rebuttals and replies.

In a country that has been ruled by the same political party for 65 years, the debate is considered a sign of political opening, because it puts the three candidates on equal footing before voters.

Candidates Ernesto Zedillo of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, Cuautemoc Cardenas of the Revolutionary Democratic Party and Diego Fernandez de Cevallos of the National Action Party will take part.

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