Brazil President Rousseff tries to win left support

Brasilia, May 1 (IANS/EFE) Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, in her fight against impeachment, met her advisors to analyse social measures she could announce on Labour Day as a way of winning back leftist support, the media reported.

Rousseff’s possibilities of remaining in office continue to decline, so in recent months the head of state has cozied up to several social movements and unions in order to recover their support, which has dwindled due to a series of austerity measures she launched last year.

While Rousseff, who met the advisors on Saturday, seeks a new approach to win back her base, her vice president and now political adversary Michel Temer is hurriedly stitching together the pieces of his eventual administration.

Temer, first in the line of succession, has begun to make up a political platform and to discreetly suggest a distribution of government positions, some that already seem certain like that of the ex-president of the Central Bank, Henrique Meirelles, as finance minister.

Temer is working to define his possible government program, which, according to a document obtained by the daily O Globo, includes the privatisation “of everything possible” in the infrastructure area.

Nonetheless, in case that should become a reality, Temer will find himself up against social movements that have already expressed their rejection of his eventual presidency and have warned of their “resistance” in the streets.

The lower house of Congress voted 367-137 on April 17 in favour of impeaching Rousseff for allegedly manipulating budget figures to minimize the deficit.

The Senate is expected to vote next month on whether to convene a trial. In the event of a trial, Rousseff will be required to step down for 180 days pending completion of the process, with Temer – himself currently under investigation – set to step in as acting president.

If the Senate ultimately decides to oust Rousseff, Temer is supposed to serve out her term, which ends January 1, 2019.

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