How presidential elections are decided in Brazil

In their latest book, political scientists Alberto Carlos Almeida and Tiago Garrido analyze past elections in Brazil to forecast October's vote, concluding that this year's election will be one of change, not continuity

presidential elections brazil
Hamilton Mourão and Jair Bolsonaro during the ceremony certifying their election as Brazil’s VP and president, respectively. Photo: Walterson Rosa/Folhapress

When political scientists Alberto Carlos Almeida and Tiago Garrido turned in their manuscript for “The Hand and the Glove: What Gets a President Elected” last November, they had no idea what would happen in the months that followed. Published this month, however, the book seeks to predict this year’s hotly contested Brazilian presidential election, using previous votes as a base of comparison.

They conclude that it will be an election of change, even if not in the classic sense of the term. That is because the head-and-shoulders favorite Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has already served two terms as Brazil’s...

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