Opinion

Bolsonaro sets new lows for aggression against Brazil’s Supreme Court

Brazilians still don't know much about how the Supreme Court works — making it an ideal target for a president like Jair Bolsonaro

Bolsonaro aggression Supreme Court
Chief Justice Luiz Fux (left) to President Bolsonaro: “This Supreme Court will stand.” Photo: Fellipe Sampaio/SCO/STF

Half a century ago, Aliomar Baleeiro was bothered by the fact that most Brazilians had no idea what the country’s Supreme Court did, who was on it, and why it mattered. So, in 1968, he published a book entitled “The Federal Supreme Court, that Unknown Other” (O Supremo Tribunal Federal, êsse outro desconhecido) examining the history of Brazil’s highest judicial body. Mr. Baleeiro, a journalist and lawyer, sought to address what he saw as a general lack of understanding as to the role of the Supreme Court in Brazilian civic life, a milieu dominated by high-profile executives and legislators. 

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