Power

Bolsonaro’s new ally: “we must have a military coup”

Roberto Jefferson is an emblematic figure of Brazilian cronyism. Now, he has joined forces with President Bolsonaro and is calls for a military coup

Bolsonaro's new ally: "we must have a military coup"
Former Congressman Roberto Jefferson. Photo: PTB Brasil

Few men embody the depths and ambiguities of Brazilian politics better than former Congressman Roberto Jefferson. He entered public life in 1971 and has lived through a military dictatorship, a new constitution, seven democratically-elected presidents (or vice presidents), and two impeachments. Mr. Jefferson himself has faced many scandals, almost bringing down a popular administration and spending time in jail for corruption. Still, he continues to be one of the kingpins of Brazil’s “lower clergy” of politicians, the vast swathes of back-benchers who rarely manage to get close to power but fight for scraps handed down by presidents in exchange...

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