Brazil’s electoral calendar is strict, dating back to the pre-internet days when TV and radio were the only platforms of political advertising, and campaigners would hand out flyers at street corners and traffic lights. The campaign only formally starts on August 16. Until then, candidates are barred from explicitly soliciting votes.
They can, however, do everything but, which is why the leading names for federal and local races have already been in campaign mode for ages. Social media, for instance, is already chock full of political ads and promos.
Since last week though, Brazil entered a critical point in its election run-up: party convention season. And these are often very different from what you see in other countries, especially in the U.S.
Today, we’ll explain what Brazilian party conventions mean — and what they change in the race from now on.
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- Euan Marshall is an editor at The Brazilian Report and also hosts the Explaining Brazil podcast in the absence of Gustavo Ribeiro.
Background reading on party conventions:
- Last week, Ciro Gomes became Brazil’s first official presidential candidate. The 64-year-old politician has tried to thread a complicated needle to capture votes from both the far-right and the center-left.
- Lula has governed Brazil for two terms, but was barred from the 2018 election following a criminal conviction. He is now gunning for a monumental comeback.
- In Episode #197, we spoke to political consultant Mario Sergio Lima to discuss the challenges facing Lula. In Episode #186, political scientist Carlos Pereira analyzed the former president’s alliances.
- Left-leaning supporters tried to sink the convention that confirmed Jair Bolsonaro’s candidacy with fake ticket reservations. The push forced the organization to change its plans.
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