The Brazilian Scene – XXV

Image: Brett Sayles


Commentary on recent events

The reform of the current electoral laws is presumed in the consolidation of a Code with 900 articles, on which the Electoral Public Prosecutor's Office (MPE) already warns about its unconstitutionality, especially when they reach the redefinition of the functions of the Electoral Justice; which should be done by complementary law on the initiative of the PGR (Attorney General of the Union).

In any case, the package has already been approved by the Federal Chamber and sent to the Senate, to later be sent to the President of the Republic for approval. The resistance of the majority of the Senate to party coalitions and federations is known; as well as the existence of a political deadlock on the possibility of quarantine for judges, prosecutors, military and police for four years. There will probably be no conditions for approval and sanction before the expiry of the legal deadline, one year before the October 2022 elections. Thus, it will be possible to experience the limitation to small parties, through the impediment of coalitions, for the second time, after 2020.

In his search for popular support, Bolsonaro ostensibly seeks new financial support for Auxílio Brasil, a replacement for Bolsa Família. For this he decreed an increase in the IOF (Tax on Credit, Exchange and Insurance Operations also related to Bonds or Securities). The measure will be in effect from September 20th to December 31st of this year and contradicts the statement that “the government would not increase any tax” (Paulo Guedes).

Lack of support, on the other hand, is what most often happens to the government, given the process of worsening inflation, consolidated unemployment, the water crisis and the melting of the markets. Ponderdata poll (September 13-15) indicates massive support for the impeachment of the president (56%) and resistance to the sale of state-owned companies (53%), a central goal of the current administration of the economy.

On the other hand, a DATAFOLHA survey confirms the rejection of the government (53%) in the public opinion represented by the sample taken. Both investigations signal high political disapproval and resistance to government measures in the economy.

In this last week, attention is drawn to the application of the Covid-kit by the operator PreventSenior, with fatal victims in an experiment without the knowledge of the victims and their families. Another crime of responsibility, to be added to the list of more than 200 measures punishable by the auxiliary legal report to the CPI-Covid of the Senate, led by Miguel Reale Jr.

With so many negative facts weighing on the government's evaluation process carried out by public opinion, one sees the deterioration of the national political regime in favor of valuing improvisation, as is the case of Minister Queiroga's decision to suspend vaccination of adolescents in country. A disrespect for the rights to survival, including young people who had already received the first dose of the Covid vaccine. A less than encouraging picture supporting a decrepit government that still has 13 months ahead of it, if it survives the pressure for impeachment.

*Benicio Viero Schmidt is a retired professor of sociology at UnB and a consultant for Empower Consult. Author, among other books, of The State and urban policy in Brazil (LP&M).



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