The worst-kept secret in Brazilian politics this year is out. Geraldo Alckmin, who previously served four terms as the governor of São Paulo, has officially joined the Brazilian Socialist Party (PSB). The move has been talked about for months — and was all but confirmed two weeks ago — and paves the way for Mr. Alckmin becoming Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s running mate in the presidential race.
Once fierce opponents, Mr. Alckmin and Lula have grown closer since the former left the mainstream right-wing Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB) last year. As we revealed in January, the bridge between the two was laid by former São Paulo Mayor Fernando Haddad — from Lula’s Workers’ Party — and former Governor Márcio França of the PSB. Both men want to run for the governor’s job in October.
The São Paulo election blocked negotiations between the PSB and Workers’ Party to form a federation — an alliance that would bind them together for at least four years. PSB politicians in São Paulo feared their party would be swallowed up by Lula’s group and lose importance on the political chessboard.