2022 Race

Boulos swaps his gubernatorial candidacy for 2024 mayoral bid

Boulos swaps his gubernatorial candidacy for 2024 mayoral bid
Guilherme Boulos. Photo: João Paulo V. Tinoco/Shutterstock

Guilherme Boulos, leader of Brazil’s biggest homelessness movement and one of the main names of the Socialism and Freedom Party (Psol), withdrew from the São Paulo governor’s race, opting to go for a congressional seat instead. The decision makes the center-left field much less crowded.

Officially, Mr. Boulos says he wants to increase his party’s bench in the House, where it has just nine of 513 seats. Behind the scenes, however, it is understood that Mr. Boulos negotiated support from the Workers’ Party to run for mayor of São Paulo in 2024. 

In the 2020 mayoral election, Mr. Boulos finished as runner-up in the runoff vote, while the Workers’ Party candidate got just 9 percent of votes in the first round. There is speculation that Mr. Boulos could get a job in a possible Lula cabinet, should the center-left icon confirm his current lead in the polls and beat President Jair Bolsonaro in the presidential race in October.

Psol was founded in 2004 after several of its founding members were expelled from the Workers’ Party for not following partisan guidelines. Since then, the two political parties have become strong allies and often team up in runoff elections.