In today’s issue: How fraudulent schemes boosted the president’s party. The government v. the “leftist clergy.”
How fraudulent schemes boosted the president’s party
During the October 2018 election, President Jair Bolsonaro’s Social Liberal Party (PSL) managed to elect 52 congressmen—becoming the second-strongest party in the House. However, new information has shown us that the PSL didn’t just benefit from a wave of conservatism around Brazil—it also used fraudulent schemes to fund its candidacies. The party used bogus female candidates to siphon money from the public electoral fund into the campaigns of more high-profile politicians.
Brazil’s electoral legislation forces parties to fill a 30% quota of female candidates—who must also receive 30% of the publicly-financed electoral fund of which every party has a cut. What many parties do—and what PSL did—is use uncompetitive candidates to receive that money and then apply it elsewhere. These candidates are rarely seen in political advertising and end up polling terribly, despite being among those who received the most funding during the election.