Brazilian philosopher Roberto Romano once compared Brazil’s presidency to a giant with clay feet. “He is mighty and all, but his power is also fragile. Without Congress to support him, the giant will crumble,” he said. We’re seeing that on full display under President Jair Bolsonaro. After shunning Congress, his administration has been collecting defeat upon defeat since the legislative year began, on February 1.
The latest blow came as the Special Budget Committee decided to take Brazil’s money laundering enforcement agency (Coaf) from under Justice Minister Sergio Moro’s jurisdiction, and put it back under the purview of the Economy Ministry, as it has been in previous administrations. Mr. Moro’s decision to join the cabinet had been conditioned to his control of Coaf—a key element in his fight against corruption.