By Jason Moore

THE big TV showdown between socialist leader Francesc Antich and his conservative counterpart Jose Ramon Bauza is taking place tonight with polls showing that the local elections have become a one horse race. An opinion poll for our sister newspaper, Ultima Hora, has Bauza´s Partido Popular winning on all fronts. The socialists will be lucky if they retain the seats they won at the last local elections four years ago. If the polls prove accurate it will be a night of disappointment for the socialists who presently rule across the Balearics.

Tonight´s TV debate will see Bauza and Antich trading political blows but it could all be for nothing. For many voters Antich equals Prime Minister Rodriguez Zapatero, who is deeply unpopular and who is set to be unseated at the general elections next year by Mariano Rajoy of the Partido Popular. The winds of change are blowing through the Balearics with the majority of voters appearing furious with the coalition government which has ruled the islands for the last four years.