Lula and Bolsonaro raise critical tone in last election campaign debate

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro (Liberal Party, right) and former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (Workers’ Party, left) raised the tone of criticism towards each other during the last televised debate of the election campaign .

The two candidates, who are contesting a second round this Sunday, dug into the past to criticize their respective mandates, in a harsh tone that illustrates the tension that is rife on the eve of the most polarized elections in Brazil’s history.

The tension that won the studios of the Globo television channel (the largest audience in the country) on Friday evening was felt from the first minutes, when Bolsonaro invited Lula to stay by his side instead of returning to his desk. , but the former trade unionist replied that he did not want to be near him.

The candidates seemed better prepared than during the last debates. Bolsonaro’s strategy has been to repeatedly accuse Lula of lying during the election campaign and also to blame him for the corruption scandals that tarnished his government (2003-2010) and that of his party colleague and successor, Dilma Rousseff.

To respond to Bolsonaro’s accusations, Lula addressed viewers three times to “apologize” for the lack of proposals in a debate where the word “lie” was a leitmotif.

Lula mainly blamed his rival for “the impoverishment of the population” over the past four years and Bolsonaro’s questionable handling of the pandemic, which led Brazil to record 690,000 deaths from covid-19.

Ironically, Bolsonaro said that if he managed to get vaccinated, it was because he bought vaccines, telling him he had to thank him for that.

The most stormy moment of the debate came when discussing the arrest last Sunday of former MP Roberto Jefferson, a former ally of Bolsonaro and Lula who threw grenades and fired dozens of gunshots about the police trying to arrest him in Rio.

Lula took advantage of this dossier to question the policy of liberalizing arms sales promoted by the right-wing leader, assuring that “whoever benefits from this policy is organized crime”.

Bolsonaro suggested that Lula travel to a favela in Rio de Janeiro to hold a rally, an act the current president has repeated several times during the campaign.

Lula tried to show that he too had gone to a favela, to meet the “extraordinary people” who live in poor neighborhoods.

In his final minute, Lula called for the vote to “restore harmony” in the country, saying Brazil “probably” had its best time under his administration.

Bolsonaro used his free minute to defend the most conservative values, saying his opponents defend the legalization of drugs and abortion.

Lula reached the second round as the candidate with the most votes in the first round, with 48.4% of the votes cast on October 2, against 43.2% obtained by Bolsonaro.

Polls for the second round indicate that this gap remains unchanged, with a difference of four to seven points between Lula and the current president.


Previous Post Next Post