Supreme Court Justice Marco Aurélio Mello denied a request from President Jair Bolsonaro to overturn state decrees that established anti-Covid-19 restrictions. Governments in the Federal District, Bahia, and Rio Grande do Sul chose to impose curfews to slow the spread of the coronavirus, as local health networks reach the brink of collapse.
It is worth noting that Justice Mello did not dismiss Mr. Bolsonaro’s request on merit, instead stating that such a plea should be filed by the Solicitor General of the Federal Government, and not by the president himself. As such, he rejected the request and will allow the Solicitor General’s office to reformulate the case.
Bolsonaro v. state governors
Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, President Bolsonaro has been firmly against any kind of restrictive measure in Brazil, claiming it would hurt the economy and impinge upon the population’s “freedom.” An early dispute on these grounds led to a Supreme Court ruling allowing state and municipal governments the power to enact restrictive measures in their constituencies.
Indeed, this decision gave the president an excuse to ignore the crisis, incorrectly claiming that the Supreme Court took away his ability to enforce measures to contain the spread of the virus.Support this coverage →