Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco is set to announce that he will leave the right-wing Democratas party to join the center-right Social Democratic Party (PSD) during a ceremony in Brasília next week. The move could be the first step toward a presidential bid for the PSD, though Mr. Pacheco has not confirmed his electoral intentions.
The PSD’s invitation to Mr. Pacheco occurred months ago, amid speculation that the Senate President could be an option to run against incumbent Jair Bolsonaro in next year’s election. The party’s initial plan is to launch him as a third-way candidate, offering a more central alternative former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Mr. Bolsonaro — the current frontrunners.
Mr. Pacheco’s Democratas party is on the cusp of merging with the Social Liberal Party to create a new right-wing group: União Brasil. However, the new party will already feature a number of potential presidential candidates — such as former Health Minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta and TV presenter José Luiz Datena — encouraging Rodrigo Pacheco to seek pastures new.