Power

Bolsonaro on wheels: A new push for popularity

In May, the Brazilian president managed to gather thousands of bikers in rallies in Brasília and Rio. Next week, he wants to get 1 million of them together in São Paulo

Bolsonaro on wheels: A new push for popularity
Jair Bolsonaro during a motorcycle rally in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: Alan Santos/PR

Amid a looming third coronavirus wave, a stuttered vaccination effort, and unfavorable electoral polls, President Jair Bolsonaro is trying to muffle the sound of his growing opposition with the roar of motorcycle engines. In May, the far-right leader gathered tens of thousands of mostly unmasked bikers on the streets of Brasília and Rio de Janeiro for a series of noisy public rallies — much to the surprise to those outside of the pro-Bolsonaro social media bubble.

On June 12, Mr. Bolsonaro hopes to attract 1 million motorbikes to take to the streets of São Paulo in a show of strength....

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