Far-Right Politician Jair Bolsonaro, Considered 'Brazil's Trump,' Elected Nation's President
We feel for you, Brazil.
October 29, 2018 at 3:47 pm
On Sunday, Brazil elected far-right former Army Captain Jair Bolsonaro as its new president.
Bolsonara won 55.13 percent of the votes in the presidential race against liberal ex-Sao Paulo Mayor Fernando Haddad.
The controversial victory follows four consecutive presidencies in which liberals held executive office. Opponents have voiced concerns around the win due to the president-elect's racist, misogynistic and homophobic rhetoric.
"He's given a voice to an ultra-right population who want to voice their prejudice and annihilate anyone who is different,” protest organizer Luka Franka argued.
The 63-year-old president leads the Social Liberty Party (SLP), a far-right anti-establishment party that boasts social conservatism and pro-market policy. He has in the past stated he is “pro-dictatorship" and praised the dictatorship that existed in Brazil between 1964 and 1985.
"We cannot continue flirting with socialism, communism, populism and the extremism of the left," Bolsonaro proclaimed in his victory speech published live on Facebook, the platform he used to campaign after being stabbed early in September during a rally.
The decision follows one of Brazil’s worst recessions, record-breaking violent crime and a multi-billion dollar corruption scandal.
“Just like he wants to make America great, I want to make Brazil great,” Bolsonaro expressed in a July interview. President Donald Trump called to congratulate Bolsonaro on his win."This is a dark day for Brazil. Brazilian democracy is now in complete crisis," stated Mark Weisbrot, a member of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington.
As a “defender of democracy,” Bolsonaro plans to reduce gun laws, reduce state intervention in the economy and indicated pulling Brazil from the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change.
"His reckless plans to industrialize the Amazon in concert with Brazilian and international agribusiness and mining sectors will bring untold destruction to the planet's largest rainforest and the communities who call it home, and spell disaster for the global climate," Amazon Watch program director Christian Poirier voiced to CNN.Bolsonaro will take office on January 1, 2019.
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