2022 Race

Lula stable in the lead, first-round win remains a possibility

lula first round
Left-wing demonstrators call for Lula’s return during rally in May 2021. Photo: Wirestock Creators/Shutterstock

A new round of polls continues to show former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in a position to secure a landslide victory in the 2022 election. Lula has 44 percent of voting intentions, a whopping 20 points ahead of incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro.

With just over eight months to Election Day, Lula is statistically tied with the sum of all of his competitors. If the first round of voting were today, Lula could win without the need for a runoff.

The polls also show that spontaneous voting intentions — when voters voice their preferences without being shown a list of candidates beforehand — are stabilizing. Mr. Bolsonaro has been in the low- to mid-20s since July 2021, while Lula has stayed around the 35-percent mark. Spontaneous polls are important because they tend to represent a candidate’s floor of support.

Meanwhile, third-way candidates continue to stall, with former Justice Minister Sergio Moro (to the right) and former lawmaker Ciro Gomes (to the center-left) tied at 8 percent.

In an election which will be driven by economic debates, Mr. Bolsonaro hopes that the recently-enforced Auxílio Brasil aid program will lift his approval ratings, currently at 23 percent. Amid a slew of bad news, there is one silver lining for the president: the share of voters with a negative outlook of the economy has stopped increasing.