BRAZIL, October 2 – Novosti. The current president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, despite polls not in his favor, will try to win on October 2 in the first round of presidential elections, promising economic growth, technological development and the creation of new jobs.
Four years ago, Bolsonaro, a military man known for his controversial remarks about women and social minorities, as well as his open sympathy for the times of military dictatorship, broke into politics unexpectedly for many.
“I remember when he was still a national deputy and spoke about his presidency for the first time, they didn’t take him seriously and didn’t expect him to win any votes. But you have to give him credit, Bolsonaro is a talented politician. He really felt the public demand, so to speak, on right-wing populism,” Dmitry Razumovsky, director of the Institute of Latin America of the Russian Academy of Sciences , told Novosti.
Then, in 2018, Bolsonaro already in the first round of the presidential elections won more than 46% of the vote, seriously breaking away from his rival, the representative of the left forces Fernando Addad , and in the second round he received 55.13%.
October 2, 00:40Procedure for electing the President of Brazil
Bolsonaro is often referred to as the “tropical Trump” because of his views and harsh language. The Brazilian president has repeatedly spoken out in support of his American ex-colleague. Even at the beginning of his election campaign, Bolsonaro openly stated that Trump, known in the world for his unpredictability, is his main role model.
Like Trump, he was not shy about speaking out against women and gay people. In one of the interviews even before the elections, he said that a woman should receive a lower salary than a man, because she could become pregnant and go on maternity leave. In another interview, he stated that he could not love a gay son.
Following Trump, Bolsonaro did not believe in the coronavirus, called it a “little flu”, refused to wear a mask at public events, criticized the restrictive measures that individual states introduced to combat the spread of the virus. At the same time, he fell ill himself.
A special commission of the Brazilian Senate accused Bolsonaro of nine crimes during the fight against the pandemic, social networks often blocked the president’s accounts due to fakes about the coronavirus. About 700,000 people have died from COVID-19 in Brazil.
Wanting to support Trump after the US election , where Joe Biden won , Bolsonaro claimed vote fraud, citing his sources. Such a position could not but affect the further relations of the President of Brazil with the new American leader. Even during the election campaign, Biden very harshly criticized Bolsonaro for the destruction of forests in the Amazon region, threatened to impose sanctions against Brazil if this policy does not change.
The “imitation” of Trump, as well as Bolsonaro’s criticism of the electoral system, gave rise to rumors that the incumbent president, in case of a loss, would refuse to recognize the election results and leave office, as his American counterpart once did. However, in one of his latest statements, Bolsonaro promised that if he loses the election, he will resign and leave politics in general.
At the same time, Bolsonaro expects that he will be elected for a second term as president on October 2. “We can’t help but win in the first round,” he said at one of his last meetings with his supporters.
The fires in the Brazilian Amazon, which break records every year, have become a stumbling block not only with Biden, but also a reason for a quarrel between Bolsonaro and the French president. Emmanuel Macron has accused Bolsonaro of not meeting climate commitments and opposed a free trade agreement between the EU and the South American bloc Mercosur. Bolsonaro responded by accusing Macron of “colonial mentality” and pursuing personal political goals.
However, the conflict was not exhausted by this. One of the users posted on the social network a photo collage depicting the presidents of France and Brazil with their wives Brigitte and Michelle, respectively. The picture was accompanied by the inscription: “Now you understand why Macron is persecuting Bolsonaro? This is jealousy.” To this comment, a response was posted from Bolsonaro’s official account: “Don’t humiliate this guy, haha.” The French president called the comment “extremely disrespectful” to his wife. The comment was later removed.
What is done
“Bolsonaro can be criticized for a lot of things, but, nevertheless, his economic policy, in general, was successful, and he also paid attention to social policy, achieved the removal of restrictions on budgets for social programs. He did a lot of things that are really objectively necessary in terms of reform of the banking sector in Brazil. Just the explosive growth of many technologies in the form of, for example, fintech. The largest digital bank is a Brazilian bank. And this, of course, is the merit of Bolsonaro and his government,” Razumovsky said.
In addition, Bolsonaro launched a major privatization program in various sectors of the economy. The sale of a state stake in the state-owned Eletrobrás, the largest electricity company in Latin America , has already been approved .
Under the Bolsonaro government, 5G technology has been launched in Brazil, which will make it possible to cover communications and the Internet, including remote areas of the country.
“Therefore, Bolsonaro should not be underestimated, as many often do. He is a politician. Bolsonaro now has a very powerful team … managers, technocrats, governors, many of whom are objectively serious professionals, this should not be underestimated,” Razumovsky stressed.
What’s to come
At the same time, despite the successes, the Brazilian economy is going through hard times, it is strongly affected by the impact of the pandemic, as well as rising fuel and food prices, and difficulties with the delivery of fertilizers that arose after the imposition of Western sanctions against Russia .
According to the Brazilian Institute for Food Sovereignty Research (Penssan), in Brazil, with a population of over 212 million people, 33.1 million are currently suffering from hunger and 125 million people are food insecure, meaning they do not know whether they can eat three meals a day.
Bolsonaro in his election program promises to focus on creating jobs, primarily for young people and women, plans tax breaks for low-income citizens, wants to build and develop infrastructure in the regions, continue the privatization program, and also promises to increase investments in the fight against crime.