After Sunday’s presidential election was called in favor of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Jair Bolsonaro, the incumbent, went AWOL. He gave no statement on the results for over 43 hours. And when he spoke, he failed to explicitly recognize his defeat.
Instead, he said he understood the reaction of some of his supporters to try to obstruct highways across the country (a move that could quickly turn into a supply shortage crisis if not dispelled soon enough). He said their anger is the “result of outrage and a feeling of injustice about how the election unfolded.”
And while he did say curbing people’s right to come and go shouldn’t be part of his camp’s playbook, he failed to explicitly tell protesters to clear the roads.
Brazilian election runners-up aren’t legally obligated to give concession speeches, but it’s one of those political customs that help ensure the democratic process is happening as it should. So what do Mr. Bolsonaro’s words mean for the transition of power in Brazil?
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- Alex Hochuli is a São Paulo-based political analyst and host of the Aufhebunga Bunga podcast, which discusses contemporary politics.
Watch our special 2022 live broadcast. The Brazilian Report team hosted special guests on Election Day for a five-hour broadcast. Guests: Mario Sergio Lima (Medley Advisors), Sergio Praça (think tank Fundação Getulio Vargas), Andrei Roman (Atlas Intel).
- Jair Bolsonaro threw everything but the kitchen sink at his re-election campaign. But even that was insufficient for him to win a second term.
- While Jair Bolsonaro remained silent, his allies began accepting defeat. If the president was hoping for a coup, he might have lost the timing to pull that off. After leaving the presidency, Mr. Bolsonaro will lose the legal perks that come with the office. That could be a problem for him, writes Amanda Audi.
- Besides the presidential race, voters in 12 states elected their governors for the next four years.
- Documents obtained by The Brazilian Report show that bank representatives have access to private data from millions of low-income voters and are offering them payroll deduction loans. A part of Jair Bolsonaro’s re-election strategy, these loans can easily become debt traps.
- We have launched a special 2022 election report with everything you need to know about the races for Congress, governorships, and, of course, the presidency. Buy it here! Use the promo code Explaining2022 for a 20 percent discount.
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