2022 Race

Senators planning pushback against Bolsonaro threats

Senators pushback Bolsonaro threats
Photo: Waldemir Barreto/SF

Eight months after leading putschist demonstrations on September 7, Jair Bolsonaro is ratcheting up his threats against institutions once more. However, while he was previously indulged by much of Congress, this now seems to be changing. Mr. Bolsonaro’s decision to grant a pardon to an allied member of Congress convicted for threatening Supreme Court justices appears to have finally hit a nerve in the Senate.

A group of senators is in talks with Supreme Court justices to mount a defense of the Judiciary in its feud with the president. Per “O Globo”, a group of six senators was in direct discussions with five members of the 11-person court. Five of the senators took part in last year’s Covid inquiry, declaring their opposition to Mr. Bolsonaro.

Talks began last week with Justice Edson Fachin, who is also the current head of Brazil’s electoral court. They concluded that no democracy can be fully functional while its Judiciary is cornered, and it is high time that they show support to the court. “No branch of power can be alone. We need to show solidarity with the Supreme Court,” said Senator Renan Calheiros.

Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco was also involved in the talks. Despite refusing to directly oppose Mr. Bolsonaro, Mr. Pacheco’s recent statements have been more forceful. On Thursday, he dismissed any doubts about the credibility of Brazil’s electoral system and yesterday called demonstrations against the Supreme Court “a grave anomaly.”