By Jess Barnard
The Brazilian election takes place on October 2nd, presenting the biggest fight against the far-right globally in a critical election for Brazil, Latin America and the globe.
The now notorious president Jair Bolsonaro is trailing a distant second in the polls to former Brazilian Workers’ Party (PT) President and former trade union leader Lula da Silva, who’s term in office brought in ground-breaking poverty reduction programs and an unprecedented push for equality in Latin America’s most populous country.
When I visited a PT event last year, I saw first-hand how Brazil’s unions, social movements and the left were gearing up for this enormous battle.
In response to his poor electoral standing, Bolsonaro is ramping up threats and smears against the electoral system and Brazilian democracy itself. From a man who has appointed military officials throughout his government, stated that Pinochet didn’t kill enough, and claimed that “only god” can remove him power these threats must be taken seriously.
Accompanying these threats, we’ve witnessed a disturbing rise in political violence against Lula’s supporters and the murder of PT official Marcelo Arruda. Internationally, we must do all we can to ensure that the results of the election are respected and stand in solidarity with Lula and the resistance against Bolsonaro.
- Jess Barnard is a members’ representative on Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) and the former Chair of Young Labour. You can follow her on twitter and Instagram.
- Take 2 minutes to speak to your MP and ask them to sign an urgent Early Day Motion on the Brazilian election, challenging Bolsonaro’s threats against the electoral system and political violence in Brazil.
- This article was originally published by Labour Outlook on September 16th, 2022.
- Featured image: Jess Barnard meets Lula da Silva in Brazil, December 17, 2021. Photo credit: Jess Barnard/twitter