Power

Political renewal movements a threat to Brazilian parties?

Political renewal movements a threat to Brazilian parties?
Protest in São Paulo. Photo: Alf Ribeiro/Shutterstock

Few would dispute the need for political renewal in Brazil. Not only is there widespread concern about formal corruption—graft, kickbacks, nepotism, and so on—it could be argued that the party system itself is corrupt. Many have therefore welcomed the emergence of new cross-party “renewal movements” in Congress, which seek to change the way politics is done. But the vote on pension reform has brought critical scrutiny, as several members of these movements turned dissidents and disobeyed their party whips. Political parties are now fighting back against lawmakers accused of having dual allegiances: to their party and to the cross-party movement. 

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