Image: Elyeser Szturm

By Joao Sette Whitaker*

If the pandemic gets worse - which seems increasingly predictable, Sergio Moro will have jumped ship before the blame for all these deaths falls on the lap of Jair Bolsonaro.

The whirlwind of events on April 24th, which will certainly go down in history, reveals some political scenarios, all while thousands and thousands die at the expense of the inconsequence of this class that thinks this is a good time to play electoral chess.

But, we have to remember that Bolsonaro is from the lower clergy, this group that came out of the dictatorship doing politics that are alien to the ideals or projects of the country, only for personal interests. He and his children are blind to any major event that requires a statesman, because they always see only the very short horizon of their personal political stakes. They're just playing their little politics, but it's possible that politics, this time, will swallow them up for good.

That's a bit why Moro left. Not that he is a statesman. Like the lower-clergy politicians, he is his equivalent in the judiciary, those judges who passed the contest who knows how, without even speaking Portuguese properly (without any prejudice, but let's say that to be a judge, we would deserve at least he knew how to speak spouse), and that made the position a lever for millionaire salaries and search for popularity using partiality and political persecution.

“Vaza-jato” showed that he is not smart, but he is smart in playing to guarantee his political future. By resigning today, which he probably didn't expect to do and hence his nervousness, he ended up being not very smart and letting leaks of crimes that may cost him dearly.

But he made clear what his line of action had been: to remain inert in the face of some louder investigations, such as the Marielle, Queiroz or Nóbrega cases, but, at the same time and surreptitiously, not to prevent other investigations, especially those carried out by order of the STF – against which he did not move – that could reach the President. That's what ended up bothering Bolsonaro, who started asking for changes in the PF. We can imagine that Moro would not look down on him if the boss, in the future, in a year or so, close to the elections, fell out of favor linked to the militias or to some crime committed by Carluxo e Cia. the news of The Intercept published on April 25, pointing out links between Flávio Bolsonaro and illegal deals in militia real estate, shows what can come.

It's an impression, but I even think that Wetzel's sudden break with Bolsonaro could be part of the same strategy, and of an articulation between the two former judges, Wetzel and Moro, knowing that the issue of militias would be too heavy.

The way would be open for his candidacy for the presidency. He would have been faithful to the “myth” as much as he could, but unwavering in his righteous action against banditry and corruption (except, of course, his own and that of his friends Dallagnol, Bretas and Cia., shown by the jet leak), that made him, against his own will, reach the boss. How annoying, but nobody worried, he would be there to take over.

Only not. Bolsonaro's moves to curb the PF's action, perhaps added (as suggested by former deputy Dr. Rosinha) to a demand from the centrão for his head to support the isolated president, made things rush. Furthermore, the role of the boss in the face of the pandemic was putting him in an increasingly uncomfortable situation. Bolsonaro's trick when asking for the PF exchange, in the end, came to serve him like a glove.

Moro came out shooting and advancing what was to appear up front: that the president pressured him, interfering in the investigations against him, and thus committing several crimes. He gets away with it. In addition, if the pandemic worsens – which seems increasingly predictable given the rising death toll and the likely collapses in Manaus and Belém –, Moro will have jumped ship before the blame for all these deaths falls on Bolsonaro’s lap. . He did not issue a word to defend the Bolsonarist delirium, as Weintraub or Araújo do. He was smartly silent and, with his departure, you can say that he left because he did not agree with the genocide.

But there is also another element: the departure of Mandetta, shortly before, created a very strong candidate for the presidency, which Moro does not want. And he also saw that the pro-quarantine position was a sure card of popularity. Leaving now is leaving Mandetta in the background and pulling the spotlight on himself.

In the end, Moro leaves at a strategic moment and, as the jet leak showed, continues to not give a knot. He was a strong candidate for the presidency, and will possibly still be on the right side when the scandals against the Bolsonaros come to light. He will ask for “excuses” for having also believed in the “myth”, but, after all, who didn't?

It remains to be seen whether his somewhat clumsy and unrefined manner, which made him expose illegal conduct when he was in the ministry (such as negotiating a position at the STF, guaranteeing a pension for the family or allowing interference by the president in the PF – after all, if that happened to your obligation was to have denounced it at the time, and not by resigning), it will not affect your flight.

But that he is more a candidate than ever, and moves in the political chessboard, in complete disregard of the tragedy that affects the world and the country, that is certain. Which shows the character of the subject well. In this, the only thing that Jair Bolsonaro said for sure: the guy is attached to his ego.

*John Sette Whitaker He is a professor at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism at USP.

Article also posted on the author's blog Cities for which?

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