2022 Race

Business leaders, artists launch pro-Lula manifesto

Lula defends the "reconstruction of Brazil" during an October 2020 rally. Photo: Ricardo Stuckert/IL
Lula defends the “reconstruction of Brazil” during an October 2020 rally. Photo: Ricardo Stuckert/IL

A group of business leaders, artists, and lawyers will launch a manifesto on March 15 urging voters to support center-left former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in the first round of this year’s election. The group includes many names who were once highly critical of Lula’s Workers’ Party — and supported the impeachment of his anointed successor Dilma Rousseff in 2016.

Among the notable signatories is businesswoman Rosangela Lyra, who has deep ties to Vem Pra Rua (Come to the Streets) movement, one of the groups which spearheaded calls to oust Ms. Rousseff. 

Per newspaper Folha de S.Paulo, the manifesto says that “beyond electing a president, in 2022 Brazil will choose between the continuation of a disaster or regaining democratic and institutional stability.” It adds that allowing the race to reach the runoff stage raises “uncertainty” and “the risk of actions outside of the constitutional bounds” — in reference to threats that Mr. Bolsonaro could try to barricade himself in power if he loses the election.

“Many of us were and continue to be critical [of Lula], but we are looking to the future, and there is no doubt that history is turning Lula into the alternative Brazil must embrace.” They mention his past successes and intention of creating a broad coalition as proof of his moderation.

All polls show Lula far ahead of Mr. Bolsonaro, and if the election were today he could pull off a first-round landslide. But, of course, there is a long way to go and the electoral landscape is bound to change.