Another week, another institutional crisis in Brazil, once again unlikely to result in the impeachment of Jair Bolsonaro. The latest scandal was triggered by footage of an April cabinet meeting that reportedly shows Mr. Bolsonaro promising to change the heads of the Federal Police before the force could “f*** [his] family over.” According to people who watched the video, cabinet members also joined in, voicing their violent fantasies of imprisoning Supreme Court justices and governors who are critical of the Bolsonaro administration.
Despite this latest crisis and the 30-plus impeachment requests sitting on the desk of House Speaker Rodrigo Maia, it is highly unlikely that Mr. Bolsonaro will be forced out of office anytime soon.
As I wrote for The Brazilian Report last week, Brazil’s recurring absurdist crises have led to a news cycle that is part ‘Groundhog Day’, part ‘Friday the 13th’: a cheap slasher flick stuck in the same perpetual time loop. Recent polls confirm this.