Brazil Has A New Far-Right President 🇧🇷
On Sunday, Brazil voted for Jair Bolsonaro, an anti-establishment far-right Congressman, as their new president, beating Fernando Haddad. The election marks a radical shift in the nation’s political leanings since its transition from dictatorship to democracy in 1985.
A tumultuous time
The election comes after Brazil’s last two presidents, both from Haddad’s Workers’ Party, were indicted on corruption charges. Brazil (Latin America’s largest economy) has been experiencing a prolonged economic slump with slow growth and high unemployment. Crime continues to be rampant, with the nation averaging 175 homicides a day this past year.
Those who are anti-Bolsonaro believe his election will lead to a far-right authoritarian rule in Brazil. They fear he will exploit military power, enable torturing, and cause violenceagainst political opponents. They also denounce his belligerent rhetoricagainst women, black Brazilians and the LGBTQ community as well as his perpetuation of fake news.
Washington Times: A victory against socialism in Brazil
Those who are pro-Bolsonaro point to the hope and change that he embodies with Brazilians. They point to surges in Brazilian stock markets due to Bolsonaro’s election as an optimistic indicator for the economy. Articles also emphasize the opposing liberal party's toxic corruption; they note that Haddad himself has fraud charges.
Will this shift Brazilian politics to the far right?
Not necessarily. While Bolsonaro’s win is a part of the global momentum towards right-wing populism, 45% of Brazilians did not vote for Bolsonaro. Conservatives still face a fragmented Brazilian Congress comprised of 30 parties. Nonetheless, Bolsonaro’s election symbolizes political desperation in changing a dismal status quo.
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