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Elections, misogyny and fake news in Brazil.

Tamara Caridad Mesa González 6 octubre, 2018

From Brazil come worrying information, which does not do more than put salt and pepper to  what may happen on October 7 when they leave millions of citizens to elect a new president.

On the one hand, the contradictions of the extreme right accelerate. Recent news accounts of the clashes between the candidate Jair Bolsonaro and his running mate, retired general Hamilton Mourão, after proposing the latter to end the extra payment for Christmas and holidays-known as aguinaldo-that workers receive.

After these lashes between ex-military, the campaign command of the Social Liberal Party vetoed the participation of Mourão in the debate of candidates for the presidency and it was announced that it will not participate in the events scheduled for next week.

Meanwhile, the vice-presidential candidate for the Workers’ Party (PT), the journalist Manuela d’Ávila, is involved in an irreverent media campaign that tries to spoil the PTA formula. These days, the young communist requested police protection to the Superior Electoral Court, since the accusations against her can lead to personal attacks.

In this scenario of deep polarization what is coming may be a pitched battle for votes. Until this moment Bolsonaro leads the polls and would face in the second round of elections the center-left Fernando Haddad (PT), the one indicated by the former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

Thus, the forecasts predict that Haddad would defeat the ex-military candidate in the October 28 ballot for a series of reasons, including the rejection of Bolsonaro’s homophobia, machismo and misogyny.

This dark character, 63 years old, never held a position that would stand out in the Chamber; he did not lead any legislative commission or a caucus and if he had any visibility it was because of his authoritarian nature, his aggressive speeches, his extreme positions and his racist and homophobic comments.

On the contrary, he is credited with being an absolute record holder in open processes in the Ethics Council, with four instituted since that body was installed in 2001 and is also facing the Supreme Federal Court in two criminal proceedings, in the which is accused of insult and apology of rape.

However, the challenges behind a possible victory at the polls are immense. According to Valter Pomar -historian, professor at the Federal University of the ABC and prominent leader of the PT- currently “there are sectors of the right, including military, who are already saying publicly that they do not accept that the PT can win and, if it wins, that it can take possession. Therefore, for everything to go well and for us to start governing on January 1, 2019, we will have to kill a lion a day; and once in government, (there are) three fundamental challenges: apply an emergency program, revoke the coup measures and create the conditions for the installation of a National Constituent Assembly. ”

In that sense, given the economic situation in Brazil, an emergency program that generates jobs and recovers social policies can be a tool that gains followers, beyond the forces of the left. Despite this, the current political situation in the country, which allowed the Brazilian right wing to successfully attack Dilma and Lula, is still propitious for tripping.

Its main objective on October 7 is to legitimize the coup against Dilma, however, have appeared “unforeseen” that did not calculate.

According to Pomar: “the first is our resistance and resilience; the second is  the far right monster that was used against us in 2014-2016, grew too much and overtook the candidates of the traditional right. Bolsonaro is that: a dog of the dictatorship, but primed by the Social Democracy Party and the Globo TV Network.

” At his point of view, Moysés Pinto Neto, doctor of Philosophy and professor at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul and the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, referring to Bolsonaro, affirms that this is “the purest repetition of Pinochetism. (They are) economic technocrats dedicated to letting the richest people impose their economic agenda. ”

For now, according to Frei Betto, these “will be the most unpredictable elections that were experienced in Brazil.” The theologian of the liberation admitted, in addition, not to have either the hope that the Congress emerged from the October vote “is less conservative than the current one”. Let’s hope to see what our electoral show holds for our America.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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