Brazilians head to the polls for the second time this month, choosing either the Social Liberal Party’s Jair Bolsonaro or
Brazilians head to the polls for the second time this month, choosing either the Social Liberal Party’s Jair Bolsonaro or the Worker’s Party’s Fernando Haddad for the presidency.
Neither candidate garnered an outright majority in the first round of elections on October 8, where Mr Bolsonaro garnered 46 percent of the vote to Mr Haddad’s 29 percent. The gap has narrowed, but pollsters still project Mr Bolsonaro to win 56 percent of the electorate.
The campaign was toxic on both sides, disenchanting many Brazilians, but the corruption scandal enshrouding the leftist Worker Party may prove fatal. For Mr Bolsonaro’s part, he has created controversy with his extreme right-wing stances on women’s and LGBT rights, while also threatening to revive autocratic streaks in Brazilian government.
A Bolsonaro victory would see Brazil swing to the far right, especially on economic policy. Welfare programs could be slashed along with corporate taxes, pleasing investors, but harming Brazil’s poor. The conservative has also promised to crack down on crime by relaxing gun laws and increasing military and law enforcement spending. Mr Bolsonaro may also seek to expand executive powers, as he has advocated for the return to policies from Brazil’s former dictatorship.
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