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Comments on recent events

1. A discussion began on the possibilities of effectively implementing the Marco Legal de Saneamento law. It was approved with fanfare in the Federal Senate with more than sixty votes last week and sent to be sanctioned by the President of the Republic. It will certainly be sanctioned, but the problems arising from the interpretation of this framework are immense. The new law, for example, establishes the National Water Agency as the regulatory institution, whose president-director alleges that it does not even have the framework to deal with the current problems.

Imagine the whole of Brazil being regulated by edicts and edicts from the National Water Agency, and the president herself claims that there are no conditions to do that. When one carefully reads the conditions for suspending tenders that have already taken place and are in force for thirty years, the role of the National Water Agency becomes even more complicated. In short, the law is very good, but its implementation will be very difficult in the short and medium term.

2. Recent data confirm that in São Paulo specifically, the violence of the Military Police has increased. This is similar to the situation in the United States, where recent practices of open violence by the police against the population have been witnessed. I highlight two points here. First, an obvious problem of disobedience, which is perhaps due to the PM's lack of hierarchy, of internal control, of actual insubordination. It is suspected that the military police, especially in São Paulo, are fully aligned with the underground situations that sustain the Bolsonaro government in this area. It is necessary to carefully monitor this situation, because insubordination and disobedience of the Military Police to its governor means that someone else is the superior or the inspirer.

3. With regard to the Presidency of the Republic, it should be noted that legal flanks have been opened and are unlikely to be closed without much pain, without much panic. Both in the TSE (the issue of fake news, whose regulation is being voted on in the National Congress), as well as in the STF (that which concerns the undemocratic behavior of the forces that support the government). The flanks are open and are reinforced by the eventual presence of Queiroz in prison and by the police search for the whereabouts of his wife, Márcia, throughout the national territory.

What will come of it is not known. In any case, it seems evident that although the government has partially blocked the possibility of impeachment in Congress (since it now has 206 votes from those aligned with the support of Centrão), it is clear that some burdens will be inevitable and from that a lot can be expected. . Impeachment via the National Congress becomes difficult, but situations to be caused by the behavior of the STF in particular are unknown.

4. Finally, it should be noted that international pressure against Brazil from international consumers and importers of agricultural commodities was once again felt. Some of the major import groups have made a rather virulent pronouncement.

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


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