Explaining Brazil #210: Pro-democracy pushback

As President Jair Bolsonaro's anti-democratic antics grow in volume, banks and tycoons become vocal in their defense of democracy. A coup, after all, is bad for business

On August 11, Brazil will witness a rare event: members of the country’s economic and intellectual elite will stand against President Jair Bolsonaro’s putschist agenda. 

They will publicly present a pro-democracy manifesto at an event that will bring together celebrities, politicians, bankers, business owners, lawyers, and judges. The document, available online, has already been signed by over 800,000 people. 

While not mentioning President Bolsonaro by name, the manifesto criticizes attempts to delegitimize the country’s electronic voting system. 

Meanwhile, the São Paulo industry federation published its own pro-democracy manifesto — albeit with softer language.

Many have said these reactions to Bolsonaro’s escalation are too little or that they have come too late — as the president has hinted of his wishes to overthrow the election for more than a year now.

Still, they represent the harshest stance big business has taken against Bolsonaro so far.

Listen and subscribe to our podcast from your mobile device:

Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Deezer


  • Euan Marshall is an editor at The Brazilian Report and also hosts the Explaining Brazil podcast in the absence of Gustavo Ribeiro. 

This episode used music from Uppbeat. License codes: RMZNWEJWBJJKREIT, JC0DIHLFF4MYCCTO, O9JB4864PJTOAF2P, KNH33TILGNADS0UD, M4XID30RGBV8YGJL.

Background reading:

Do you have a suggestion for our next Explaining Brazil podcast? Drop us a line at [email protected]

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.