On Tuesday, October 4 at 19:30 GMT
Brazilians entered a new phase of a tense presidential campaign this week when the two main candidates failed to achieve an outright victory.
The current president, Jair Bolsonaro, topped the polls, which for months put former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva ahead with an expected decisive advantage. Although da Silva came in first with 48 percent of the vote, he did not receive the 50 percent needed to win. The next and final vote is scheduled for October 30.
As the largest democracy in the region and the fourth largest in the world, the election is being closely watched globally and is considered one of the most important elections in the country’s recent history. The two candidates are in stark contrast to each other. Bolsonaro is seen as a far-right populist politician whom supporters admire for his conservative values, but critics blame for social and economic turmoil. Da Silva is seen by his supporters as a progressive who could restore the country to the global stature and economic growth they once admired, but whom critics see as corrupt.
As the run-off campaign progresses, fears are growing of deepening polarization and continued violence. Some election observers fear that Bolsonaro’s continued efforts to undermine electoral security could usher in a crisis similar to the one seen in the US capitol on January 6, 2021.
In this episode of The Stream we discuss what to expect during Brazil’s runoff campaign and what this new phase of the election means for Brazilians.
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