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Thursday, June 8, 2023

Brazil Presidential Elections Head to Runoff

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Following the first round of Brazil’s presidential election on Sunday, it was announced that none of the candidates were able to secure a majority. A runoff between former President Lula da Silva and incumbent Jair Bolsonaro will take place on October 30.

While a total of 11 candidates were vying for the top job in South America’s powerhouse, only two have enjoyed significant support.

Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, 76, who served as president from 2003 to 2010, received 48.1% of the vote; the incumbent, Jair Bolsonaro, 67, received 43.5%. With 98.8% of the votes tallied, it was mathematically impossible for either of them to win in the first round, according to the election authority.

“As I always said, we are going to win these elections – this is just extra time for us,” Lula said, speaking from a hotel in downtown Sao Paulo on Sunday night. “The battle continues until our final victory.”

Lula da Silva, who represents Brazil’s Workers’ Party, has focused his campaign on overcoming social inequality and alleviating poverty. Among the measures he proposes are raising taxes on the rich, widening the social safety net, and increasing the minimum wage.

Bolsonaro’s campaign slogan has been ‘God, family, homeland, and liberty’. His vision of Brazil’s future includes privatizing the country’s state-owned oil company, opening the Amazon region to more mining, and easing gun regulations.

Ahead of Sunday’s vote, Bolsonaro warned that he will contest the results if he loses, calling into question the reliability of Brazil’s electronic voting system.

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