“This choice is not easy at all: and it is not won” declared this Friday the former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who will compete on October 2 for his third term. Despite being more than 12 points ahead of his adversary, Head of State Jair Bolsonaro, by PT candidate does not stop worrying about the direction that the “conservative vote” will take. There is a center-right fringe that can turn towards him and for this reason, capturing that segment of the electorate is today one of the main axes of his campaign strategy.
Lula defines what his international project will be if he wins the elections
His latest conquest, in this field, is the accession of the deputy André Janones, 38 years oldyes A lawyer by profession, he was nominated by his Avante party (founded in 1988) as a candidate for the presidency of the country, a mission that he has just resigned to support the leader of the Workers’ Party. With an ideology close to traditional conservatism, the group approached the Bolsonarist government during the first three years of its administration. But now he has decided to move away from the right and turn his forces over to the center coalition that intends to consolidate Lullism.
Other organizations tend to follow this path, as is the case with a large sector of the leadership of the Brazilian Democratic Movement (MDB), among whom are former heads such as Renan Calheiros and Jader Barbalho. Precisely two days ago, the center-left coalition that leads the former president as a candidate announced its support for the reelection of Helder Barbalho as governor of the state of Pará (in northern Brazil), Jader’s son, and as his father, a member of the PMDB.
These acquisitions take away space from Bolsonaro precisely in that political sector that was one of the pillars of his victory in 2018. This case is especially sensitive since the Democratic Movement is one of those with the largest parliamentary blocs. It is good to remember that in its ranks, even today, Michel Temer militates; the former vice of Dilma Rousseff who, in 2016 and with a parliamentary coup in between, managed to climb to the top of the Executive Power.
The Bolsonarist model “was created to take money from the poor and give it to the rich.”
There are other center-rightists willing to be part of the “great alliance” that Lula is fighting for. The former ruler today is accompanied in his formula by Gerald Alckmin, a social democrat from the PSDB, party of Fernando Henrique Cardoso, who disaffiliated himself from the social democracy to go to the “socialist” PSB. They affirm that it was FHC who gave him the go-ahead to go over the side. They say that the famous sociologist was betting on liquidating Bolsonarism, the most extremist among the representatives of the vernacular right. According to some sources, the man who governed Brazil between 1995 and 2002 sensed from the outset that his own party would not have the strength to meet that goal. And he then opted to give tacit backing to Lula da Silva, with whom he has a long-standing relationship.
The PT leader returned today to celebrate Alckmin joining him as vice president. He said that both have “wide experience” in government management (Alckmin was governor of the State of São Paulo, the richest in the country). However, he recalled that there are 59 days left for the first round and stated that in this time “we cannot rest a single day.”
Precisely, this morning the candidate participated in a meeting with doctors from the Unified Health System (SUS), which guarantees free care for all citizens. He sharply criticized the current head of the Planalto Palace (the government house in Brasilia) by saying that the Bolsonarista model “was created to take money from the poor and give it to the rich.” And he warned, in this sense, that “if we do nothing, (Bolsonaro) will end the SUS, and will open the doors to the total privatization of health.”
*Author of Brazil 7 days. From São Paulo, Brazil.
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