Obstacles to federations

Dora Longo Bahia, Revoluções (calendar project), 2016 Acrylic, water-based pen and watercolor on paper (12 pieces) - 23 x 30.5 cm each


Any proposal for a federation presupposes a diagnosis of the current social and economic crisis and a program to overcome it.

It will not be easy to form a federation for the 2022 elections. Although there is political will and awareness of the need for unity within the parties and between the left parties, more specifically PT, PSB and PC do B, and even with PSol, Rede and PV. Without ignoring the fact that Psol itself is proposing a federation with PCdoB and Rede, even approved by its national leadership.

Leaving aside the realities of each party and starting from the need to defeat Jair M. Bolsonaro (PL), the center-left front would already be justified. It grows in importance when we have the fact that we will also face a candidate or two from the so-called third way, that is, from the neoliberal right that was a partner in Lava Jato, in the coup against President Dilma Rousseff (PT) and in the Michel Temer government ( PMDB), and today supports the Bolsonaro government’s raison d’être economic program.

Thus, the historic moment and the political-electoral dispute require unity from the left to defeat Bolsonaro and the right expressed in the duo Doria (PSDB)-Moro (Podemos) who may even become an ally due to pressure from the economic and media forces that arise. oppose us and our political project.

One cannot disregard the political positions of segments of allied parties, such as PSB and Rede, which do not support Lula's pre-candidacy (PT). They defend a third way anti-Bolsonarist candidate.

As if these existing obstacles in the current scenario were not enough, the fact is that, as it was approved by Congress, the institute of federations has more questions than answers. With an aggravating factor: its regulation will be up to the TSE, which has not yet done so.

What will be the decision criteria within the federation, proportional to the parties' benches or their vote in 2022, or will each party have one vote? How will candidates for proportional legislative offices and majority positions in the Executive and Senate be decided? The definition of criteria is decisive for the choice of candidates for state governments and for the Senate, President of the Republic and Chamber of Deputies.

In the same way that sectors of the left-wing parties do not support Lula's pre-candidacy, many of his congressmen, whether in the legislative assemblies, whether in the Chamber of Deputies or in the Senate, align themselves with the federal government or state governments of neoliberal positions of the so-called 3rd way. Which shows that, in the Legislative, the implementation of the federation is also a difficult path.

In 2024, we will have municipal elections. What will be the criteria for deciding who will represent the federation in each of the 5.570 municipalities, both in the Executive and in the City Council? The same question applies to the States.

And when we are exercising legislative mandates and governments, what will be the criteria for deciding on government policies and projects, on essential political issues, how to reconcile differences and divergences? How to organize candidate lists so as not to repeat coalitions, where one party nominated 20 or 30 candidates and others only one or two, already with a consolidated electoral base? Will each party be willing to seek candidacies that contribute to electing more deputies?

The fact is that, in our case, the federation did not emerge as a result of alliances and common struggles of parties around different flags, although these alliances exist both in the struggle Fora Bolsonaro, in the Frente Brasil Popular and in the Frente Povo sem Medo and in the common action of the foundations of the aforementioned left parties and their congressmen in the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate. Particularly in the fight against Bolsonaro's coup attempts and against authoritarian measures such as the anti-crime package and social security, administrative and labor reforms.

Successful experiences such as that of the Frente Ampla of Uruguay or the Chilean Concertation are historical arrangements based on the base or post-dictatorship political agreements. Here, the approval of the federation of parties was a solution to prevent the disappearance of historic parties, such as the PCdoB, the PV and the Rede and even the Psol (later the ghost was removed), due to the risk of not overcoming the so-called performance clause . Therefore, a much more casuistic solution, since proportional coalitions had been prohibited, than an institute resulting from a process of good collective experiences.

In any case, it is worth noting that, unlike the coalition, its scope goes far beyond the electoral period and allows the construction of a programmatic identity and political action that can become a weapon against party fragmentation.

The federation, if regulated in such a way as to guarantee the weight of each party, can be a starting point for a real front of grassroots parties with a common program, with democratic decisions that guarantee the size of each party in terms of votes and affiliates. , with proportional bodies for the direction and real participation of the bases in previous and primaries and decision on the program.

This does not mean that, over time, common struggles have not developed and coalition governments have been created and even fronts in the Legislative Houses, with Opposition and Minority leaders when we are the opposition. But, to date, the experiences have been few and, in many cases, “for the English to see”, since only the governing party makes the decisions.

Debate and public discussion, with vetoes and impositions, are the sure way to the failure of the federation and to weaken the position of those who defend it. The most prudent thing is to wait and work for a TSE decision that makes the federation possible. It is important to take into account that, in the first place, any proposal for a federation presupposes a diagnosis of the current social and economic crisis and a program to overcome it.

The strength of the image and message of 4, 5 or 7 federated parties, supporting a single candidate, can be strong and sufficient for victory. But, if poorly managed and if the decision criteria are not democratic and proportional to the weight of each party, we will actually create the conditions for the failure not only of the federation, but of the elected governments.

* Jose Dirceu he was Minister of the Civil House in the first Lula government. Author, among other books, of Memórias (Editorial generation).

Originally published on the website Power360.


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